Star Trek: Season 1, Episode 10

The Corbomite Maneuver (10 Nov. 1966)

TV Episode  -   -  Action | Adventure | Sci-Fi
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Ratings: 8.2/10 from 1,132 users  
Reviews: 14 user | 9 critic

After being forced to destroy a dangerous probe, a gigantic alien ship arrives to capture and condemn the Enterprise's crew as trespassers.



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Title: The Corbomite Maneuver (10 Nov 1966)

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Episode complete credited cast:
Anthony D. Call ...
Dave Bailey (as Anthony Call)


In a section of unexplored space, the Enterprise comes across a marker of sorts that will not let it pass. They destroy the marker and move on but soon find themselves in conflict with an unknown alien who accuses them of trespassing and tells them they have only 10 minutes to live. Kirk decides it's time to play a little poker and literally bluff his way out of the situation by telling the alien that the Enterprise has a device on board that will destroy the alien as well as the Enterprise. The bluff works but the alien turns out to be something quite unexpected. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


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Release Date:

10 November 1966 (USA)  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


The alien ship, Fesarius, was made of ping-pong balls glued to a Plaster-of-Paris shell. See more »


When Kirk, McCoy and Bailey are in the transport room ready to beam over to the alien ship, they are bent over with their hands on their knees. When they arrive McCoy has his hands off his knees and slightly to the side. See more »


Mr. Spock: I regret not having learned more about this Balok. In some manner, he was reminiscent of my father.
Lt. Cmdr. Montgomery 'Scotty' Scott: Then may Heaven have helped your mother.
See more »


Referenced in Star Trek (2009) See more »

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User Reviews

My Favorite TOS Episode
27 May 2007 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

This episode may make some Trekkers' Top 20 lists, but likely not many Top Tens. Yet quietly and without fuss this "bottle show" episode remains perfectly indicative of TOS's purpose, spirit and delivery.

Think Murray Leinster's classic sci-fi short story "First Contact" with an additional plot twist, possibly two. A scriptwriter or editor who may have had Uhura say the same line a tad too often and missed "adrenaline gland" but had to have served in the Navy, knew the true meaning of "countermand," and wasn't afraid to ask, "What are you going to do with that six percent when they give it to you, Jim?"

Add Joseph Sargent's direction, Fred Steiner's music, Gerald Perry Finnerman and his color gels, Anthony Call's laser-accurate performance complemented by that of the core ensemble, Clint Howard's eyebrows and dubbing, and Ted Cassidy's voice of authority as only he could deliver. Splendid sound effects and their editing, which offset the visual effects, though the physically infeasible appearance of the alien mother ship got the point across very nicely. And an ending that made me smile as a youngster, and does so today.

And Now I Digress, Somewhat: I often feel compelled to explain to today's "post-next generation" sated with digital effects and compulsory cheesecake just how TOS had its impact, my having watched its world premiere and nearly every episode at first broadcast. And I'm saddened to see TOS and its actors parodied today, much less by the actors themselves.

Friends, when TOS premiered "In Living Color!" its only competition was Irwin Allen's "running and jumping shows," which had as much science as a peanut butter sandwich left out in the double sun too long. The Outer Limits (in black-and-white!) had run its course after only two seasons, and not even the revered Rod Serling would attempt the genre on the 'tube with recurring characters.

We readers of Asimov, Bradbury, Clarke, Heinlein, Sturgeon and the other masters of the genre (okay, Harlan Ellison, we know you must scream, so you can count yourself) climbed down our trees and praised The Great Bird of the Galaxy for making the 'tube finally listen and display something hopeful to talk about before we finally caught up with our own imaginations on the moon.

The actors had chops, if the scripts couldn't make you feel they could make you THINK, the characters grew to make you care, and not one scantily-clad beauty was the token she first seemed if you were young enough to be allowed to watch. Wondrous times indeed.

So start with this episode, or return to it as you would an old friend, and from there go back and forth to your heart's content. Long live Balok, and pass the tranya!

15 of 17 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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