Star Trek: Season 3, Episode 18

The Lights of Zetar (31 Jan. 1969)

TV Episode  -   -  Action | Adventure | Sci-Fi
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Ratings: 6.1/10 from 639 users  
Reviews: 11 user | 2 critic

A mysterious, twinkling mass of sapient energy ravages an important archive and Scotty's new girlfriend may be linked to it.


(as Herb Kenwith)


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Episode complete credited cast:
Jan Shutan ...
John Winston ...
Libby Erwin ...
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Zetar (voice)


The Enterprise is on course to install new equipment on Memory Alpha, the central library storage facility for the Federation. Chief Engineer Scott has been working closely on the project with Lieutenant Mira Romaine with whom he has been forming a romantic attachment. The Enterprise encounters a space storm that kills the staff at Memory Alpha and possesses Lieutenant Mira Romaine. Written by laird-3

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Release Date:

31 January 1969 (USA)  »

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Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


Star Trek (1966) is known as a great science fiction series but many of its stories contain archetypes of horror. This is the seventh of eight stories that contain a "ghost," what author Stephen King calls an embodiment of the past imposing its will upon the present. Other ghosts (whether supernatural or metaphorical) in the series can be found in Star Trek: What Are Little Girls Made Of? (1966), Star Trek: Space Seed (1967), Star Trek: Who Mourns for Adonais? (1967), Star Trek: The Doomsday Machine (1967), Star Trek: Return to Tomorrow (1968), Star Trek: And the Children Shall Lead (1968), and Star Trek: The Savage Curtain (1969). See more »


At 48:00 (for 10 seconds) Kirk, McCoy and Spock are speaking - through the doorway behind McCoy, you can see a discarded newspaper lying on the floor that one of the (TV) crew members apparently left on the set. It is still there at 48:58 for another 25 seconds or so. See more »


Capt. Kirk: [Captain's log] When a man of Scotty's years falls in love, the loneliness of his life is suddenly revealed to him. His whole heart once throbbed only to the ship's engines.
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User Reviews

My Ship is Being Pursued by Lights in Space!
7 March 2007 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Here it is: the most forgettable Trek episode of the entire 3-year run of the original series. I've seen it a few times over the past 30 years and the only image I could remember until now were these lights flashing in the eye of the female lieutenant, newly-assigned to the Enterprise and the object of Scotty's desires. There are a couple of mildly-amusing scenes of Scotty mooning or swooning over this Lt. Romaine but, otherwise, there's nothing else to elicit even a modicum of interest. Other really low-rated episodes of the 3rd season, such as "Spock's Brain" and "The Way to Eden," at least have that campy ridiculous tone to fall back on or the cheese factor which can be appreciated in our weaker moments. Other boring 3rd season episodes still have some moderately interesting ideas straining to grab our attention, however weakly. Not in this one. This one is just consistently dull throughout - interminably dull, genuinely sleep-inducing - the 'watching grass grow'-type of dull.

The plot has the Enterprise heading towards Memory Alpha, a planetoid functioning as a central library for the entire Federation. This is really the only idea presented here - a galactic library of the future. This concept is soon wrapped up unceremoniously when the library is wiped out by these Lights of Zetar. The Zetar Lights leave, then they return (these are literally flashing points of light). They chase down the Enterprise. They infect Lt. Romaine somehow. She opens her mouth and strange noises come out, like she's about to vomit. The Zetar Lights leave again, then they follow the ship some more. Kirk does decide to fire phasers soon and, you may think, OK, the action is kicking in finally, but he has to stop when Scotty starts crying on the intercom. The top officers sit down with Romaine in the conference room and have a long discussion. The end of this scene, when Kirk explains their final strategy, does contain Shatner's worst acting moment of the series ("If.. we ...can...CONTROL! ..that moment!" accompanied by an odd hand gesture). Oh, yes, there is one nearly-exciting moment when Sulu informs Kirk that...the lights are changing their velocity! Monotony - thy name is Zetar.

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