Star Trek: Season 2, Episode 6

The Doomsday Machine (20 Oct. 1967)

TV Episode  |   |  Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi
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Ratings: 8.8/10 from 1,247 users  
Reviews: 25 user | 8 critic

The USS Enterprise encounters the wrecked USS Constellation and its distraught captain who's determined to stop the giant planet-destroying robot ship that killed his crew.



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Title: The Doomsday Machine (20 Oct 1967)

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Episode complete credited cast:
Elizabeth Rogers ...
John Winston ...
Richard Compton ...
Lt. Washburn
John Copage ...
Tim Burns ...
Jerry Catron ...


The U.S.S. Constellation and its crew were destroyed by a giant robot ship which consumes planets for fuel, leaving only a guilt-ridden Commodore Decker aboard the crippled ship. Kirk beams over to begin repairs while Decker beams aboard the Enterprise. After Kirk loses radio contact with the Enterprise, the obsessed Commodore seizes command of the starship, determined to destroy the planet-killer, even at the cost of Kirk's ship and the entire crew. Written by

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


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Release Date:

20 October 1967 (USA)  »

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Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


This episode was nominated for a Hugo Award for Best Dramatic Presentation, at the 1968 World Science Fiction Convention. See more »


When Mr. Scott beams over to the Constellation, he wears a kit of some kind that is held by a diagonal strap over his right shoulder. The strap is visible just before the Constellation gets underway, but after the ship starts to move, Scott is not wearing the strap as he is thrown off balance and clings to machinery and the hexagonal grid behind him. Then the ship's ride smooths out, and after a cutaway to Captain Kirk, Scott is suddenly wearing the strap over his shoulder again. See more »


Spock: Random chance seems to have operated in our favor.
Dr. McCoy: In plain non-Vulcan English, we've been lucky.
Spock: I believe I said that, Doctor.
See more »


Referenced in Star Trek New Voyages: Phase II: In Harms Way (2004) See more »

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User Reviews

A Hollowed out log roaming through space
9 November 2013 | by (Buffalo, New York) – See all my reviews

One of my favorite Star Trek prime episodes is The Doomsday Machine and the thing the Enterprise and the Constellation encounter should easily qualify as a doomsday device if one is waging war on an interplanetary, nay and intergalactic scale. One wonders about the race that built this thing that is wandering through the Milky Way galaxy destroying whole solar systems at a time. It's faster, but starships like the Enterprise are more maneuverable, a fact that saves the Enterprise during this episode.

William Shatner and the crew come across the wrecked hull of the Constellation with only its commander, Commodore William Windom aboard. His crew was sent down to a planet that no longer exists because it was destroyed by a Doomsday device, a miles long machine that looks like a hollowed out log floating through space. It's not floating and it isn't hollow. It is self fueling feeding on the planets and other objects in its path and it's hull is impervious to starship phaser fire. Nobody tried Photon torpedoes.

Windom dominates this episode with his performance as the mad Commodore Matt Decker at once grieving for his crew, horrified by the seeming indestructibility of what he encountered and obsessed with destroying it somehow. James Doohan as Scotty does yeoman service in getting the Constellation engines up and running for a hail Mary pass at the Doomsday machine.

One of my favorites.

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