Star Trek: Season 2, Episode 2

Who Mourns for Adonais? (22 Sep. 1967)

TV Episode  -   -  Action | Adventure | Sci-Fi
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Ratings: 7.1/10 from 884 users  
Reviews: 12 user | 5 critic

A powerful being claiming to be the Greek god Apollo appears and demands that the crew of the Enterprise disembark onto his planet to worship him.



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Title: Who Mourns for Adonais? (22 Sep 1967)

Who Mourns for Adonais? (22 Sep 1967) on IMDb 7.1/10

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Episode complete credited cast:
Carolyn Palamas
John Winston ...


The Enterprise is stopped dead in its tracks by a powerful energy force that appears in the form of a human hand. Soon a being claiming to be Apollo orders Kirk and several others down to the planet below. Apollo claims to have visited Earth 5,000 years ago and Kirk theorizes that he may be telling the truth. Apollo's demand for unquestioned servitude however doesn't give the crew much choice and it becomes imperative that they locate and destroy his power supply. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

apollo | greek | greek god | servitude | hand | See more »


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Release Date:

22 September 1967 (USA)  »

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Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


Gene Roddenberry:  The hand seen stopping and holding the Enterprise. See more »


At one point while Spock is trying to disengage the Enterprise from Apollo's "hand," he refers to Apollo by name. However, at no time has anyone on board the Enterprise been informed of Apollo's identity before communications are re-established. See more »


Capt. Kirk: All right, we're here at your invitation. Would you mind telling us what you want without all the Olympian generalities?
See more »


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

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User Reviews

Some fairly deep stuff.
27 August 2010 | by (The San Francisco Bay Area) – See all my reviews

Alright, where to start. We have on the surface a pretty standard sci- fi theme of old-historic power meets modern man. The two meet and things happen.

We've got this highly self centered and egotistical (and I should add abusive) "god" from Earth's past wanting adoration just like the olden days. But the days of mans' "oohing" and "ahhing" over things like fire, storms and earthquakes are over. Man is the master of his domain (the odd Klingon not withstanding), and needs little for super natural beings to interfere in his life.

But Apollo has other plans.

What strikes me as being interesting about this episode is a notion that the author brought up. The notion that we, mankind, have this primitive nature within us, but that we grow beyond it as we mature. Apollo, as another reviewer stated, is in this essence an immature teenage boy. He's an adolescent with lots of power. So much power that he can stop one of starfleet's finest vessels cold in space.

The story comments on man's primitive instincts and base desires. They're a foundation for a lot of what human's have achieved, but in the end they're only the foundation, and not the higher modes of thought we use in everyday life. Apollo uses his classical Greek god status and powers to try to win over the higher social circle that is the personnel of Starfleet command. He has temporary success, but must ultimately be brought down lest the rest of the Federation see/hear/read about the Enterprise not returning from a mission.

In this way you could use this episode as an allegory for a lot of man's ills, and a lot of history we as humans have created for ourselves because of our inner Apollo. Though the truth is that even though we recognize all those negative or over-energetic and unregulated aspects within ourselves, we still have Apollo-like moments. The key is to not let our inner Apollo over come our inner Kirk :-)

The times being what they were we have a Russian in the episode in the form of Chekov. Scotty, for whatever reason, has beamed down completing the usual "Let's send the ship's senior staff to the planet" motif that seems to be in nearly all Trek episodes. But hey, we wouldn't have a show or story if that didn't happen.

If I had a gripe with this installment of Trek it's that the thing wasn't shot outdoors. It's got that ever oh-so Trek artificiality when it comes to alien planetscapes shot on a stage. Which is too bad because this would have been perfect if Desilu could have found an old Steve Reeves' gladiator set, and had it double for an ancient Greek god oracle. Then again who knows? Anyway, that's how I would've shot it :- )

In any event, give it a whirl. It should entertain.

*EDIT* Hmm, interesting; apparently some of this applies to myself: An egotistical self-centered "god", prone to mood sways and high opinions of his worth than he actually is, has caused some mischief and problems for the traffic ways in the UFP. However, the difference is that for Trek's Apollo, his treatment was forced. Mine was voluntary, and now I've got some sort of plot to get me to "fairer pastures"; note; not greener, but something more suitable? Sorry. It's not going to happen. No matter who is sent to plead the case.

These reviews are done.

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