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The Enterprise is guided to a distant, long-dead world where survivors of an extremely ancient race - existing only as disembodied energy - desiring the bodies of Kirk, Spock and astro-biologist Ann Mulhall so that they may live again.


Ralph Senensky


Gene Roddenberry (created by), John T. Dugan (as John Kingsbridge)




Episode complete credited cast:
William Shatner ... Capt. Kirk / Sargon
Leonard Nimoy ... Mr. Spock / Henoch
DeForest Kelley ... Dr. McCoy
Diana Muldaur ... Dr. Ann Mulhall / Thalassa
James Doohan ... Scott / Voice of Sargon
Nichelle Nichols ... Uhura
George Takei ... Sulu
Cindy Lou Cindy Lou ... Nurse
Majel Barrett ... Christine Chapel


From a planet bereft of life for half a million years, the Enterprise hears the voice of Sargon, who is able to control the ship and tells them to transport to specific coordinates which target them to a subterranean chamber. The away party consisted of Kirk, Spock, McCoy and astro-biologist Ann Mulhall; the security guards they planned to take along were prevented from de-materializing. Sargon is one of only three survivors of the planet's intelligent race - pure energy, matter without form. They tell the away party that they once started life on Earth and many other places. Suddenly Sargon possesses Kirk's body, saying he requires Spock and Ann Mulhall's bodies, too, in order to give the only other survivors of his race new life. He promises the bodies will be returned after they build superior mechanical robots as their definitive bodies, then leaves Kirk's and allows them to beam up and freely make up their minds. McCoy isn't tempted by curiosity and potential benefits, but Kirk ... Written by KGF Vissers

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


TV-PG | See all certifications »


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Release Date:

9 February 1968 (USA) See more »

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Did You Know?


The name of the planet itself, Arret, is never mentioned onscreen. See more »


When the two security guards fail to beam down with the rest of the team, Kirk asks Scotty if the security guard (singular) is still on the ship, just after Spock and just before Scotty each refer to them as security guards (plural). See more »


Scott: It's a fancy name, but how will something that looks like a drop of jelly make this thing work? You'll need microgears and some form of pulley that does what a muscle does.
See more »

Alternate Versions

Special Enhanced version Digitally Remastered with new exterior shots and remade opening theme song See more »


Featured in For the Love of Spock (2016) See more »

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User Reviews

A little off.
1 June 2017 | by BlueghostSee all my reviews

I was originally going to title this review as "Worthy of Season Three", with the implication that this episode of Season Two Trek is spartan in presentation, and has a lot of clichés aimed at Star Trek from onlookers who are not fans and fans alike.

The music is canned, the episode takes place entirely within the ship (no location shots, not interior studio shots of other locations outside the ship), and the script is borderline vapid. This script needed some doctoring before being committed to film.

The shortcomings; one of the myths created by asinine social psychologists in the 60s and 70s was that we only use ten or twenty percent of our minds. Completely false on every level. There was no bigger lie foisted on the public. The reason this is important to this episode is that the animal mind (in this case the human mind) is an integrated data storage and processing unit made up of a massive network of microprocessors. If you dump another data set into it at the mid-thirties or mid-forties age bracket, the person in question might not be able to function. But, it is science fiction, and no one new data storage and processing limits at that time. Still, there is a kind of psychological arrogance that pervades and reeks of this episode.

The other aspect is that the episode needed a bit more pizazz or energy to make it sing. We're seeing a love triangle of sorts, or rather a competition between two males for the attentions of a female. One man wishes to keep his people thriving, the other is willing to do anything to win the female. It sounds like an interesting story premise, and it is, but again we're limited to the interiors of the ship and a proxy use of the characters by another set of characters that we only see as orbs with blinking lights.

The acting carries the episode, but only far. In short the technological limits of both the production and the knowledge of the screenwriter, hold back what could have been a better episode. Nimoy does a superb job of portraying a very Machiavellian entity, and Shatner and the rest of the cast give excellent performances, but we're still stuck on the ship with characters that should have been both more cinematic and dynamic at the same time. The lack of SFX and the lack of locations couple with the already listed shortcomings to give us a very watered down version of a tale that should have been far more dynamic.

If I had shot it I might have had Spock going around taking over the ship and sabotaging efforts to stop him, replete with special effects and exterior shots of the Enterprise. But, that'll have to wait for another time and another place.

As it is it's a run in the mill episode. A sort of "Oh, this one's one..." installment of classic Star Trek.

An episode that should have had more impact, but didn't. Oh well.

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