Star Trek (1966–1969)
23 user 10 critic

Space Seed 

While on patrol in deep space, Captain Kirk and his crew find and revive a genetically engineered world conqueror and his compatriots from Earth's 20th century.


Marc Daniels


Gene L. Coon (teleplay by), Carey Wilber (teleplay by) | 2 more credits »

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Episode complete credited cast:
William Shatner ... Capt. Kirk
Leonard Nimoy ... Mr. Spock
Ricardo Montalban ... Khan
Madlyn Rhue ... Marla
DeForest Kelley ... Dr. McCoy
James Doohan ... Scott
Makee K. Blaisdell ... Spinelli (as Blaisdell Makee)
Nichelle Nichols ... Uhura
Mark Tobin Mark Tobin ... Joaquin
Kathy Ahart Kathy Ahart ... Crew Woman
John Winston John Winston ... Transporter Technician


The Enterprise comes across the SS Botany Bay, an ancient Earth spaceship from the 20th century traveling through deep space with a group of genetically engineered humans in suspended animation (a remnant from Earth's Eugenics Wars of the 1990s). Visiting this vessel automatically revives Khan, a charismatic Sikh warrior-type with five times the strength and ambition of regular humans, who immediately attracts the attentions of ship's historian Lt. Marla McGivers. While Kirk and Spock slowly learn he is Khan Noonien Singh, the last and greatest of Earth's tyrants, Khan uses both Marla and the ship's library to revive his superhuman compatriots and take over the Enterprise. Written by statmanjeff

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


TV-PG | See all certifications »


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Release Date:

16 February 1967 (USA) See more »

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Did You Know?


In the original script, the Botany Bay's log stated that the ship was originally headed for the Tau Ceti star system. Examination of the ship reveals a damaged steering system, which has sent the Botany Bay careening off-course into deep space. See more »


When Kirk is punching out the glass of Khan's stasis chamber, his phaser drops from his belt. DeForest Kelly looks quickly around, flummoxed about whether that is enough to call "Cut" or to continue the scene. He opts for the latter and the scene goes on. See more »


Lt. Marla McGivers: I don't know if you're going to like living in our time.
Khan Noonien Singh: Then I'll have to remould it to my liking.
Lt. Marla McGivers: [Khan moves in to embrace Marla] Please don't.
Khan Noonien Singh: [pushes her away] Go. Or stay, but do it because it is what you *wish* to do!
[awkward pause]
Khan Noonien Singh: Well?
Lt. Marla McGivers: I'll stay a little longer.
Khan Noonien Singh: How many minutes do you graciously offer?
Lt. Marla McGivers: I only meant...
Khan Noonien Singh: This grows tiresome. You must now *ask* to stay.
See more »

Alternate Versions

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


Referenced in Futurama: Into the Wild Green Yonder (2009) See more »


Theme from Star Trek
Written by Alexander Courage
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User Reviews

Produces an Interesting Concept; Looks Ahead
28 April 2014 | by HitchcocSee all my reviews

During the first season of the original series there is no way that the producers had a thought about a movie sequel to this series. We all know how tenuous even a second season was for this expensive show. Thanks to the fans they took a chance and the rest is history. In this episode, the charismatic Ricardo Montalban plays Khan, a genetically engineered being whose purpose for existence, along with his crew, is domination. Shades of Hitler and other historical conquerers. The Enterprise and James T. Kirk always seem to err on the side of compassion, and this gets them into hot water in this episode. Upon entering Khan's ship, their suspended animation modules are opened and he fills his lungs with air and starts his conquest. His response to kindness is to manipulate it to his own purposes. His first act when he awakens in sick bay is to threaten McCoy with a knife. McCoy tells him how to sever the carotid artery and this makes Khan laugh and, hence, spare the good doctor. A beautiful young crewman, who has already started to drool over Khan (women weren't always portrayed as that evolved on this show), is enlisted by the manipulator to assist him. He is cruel and she is submissive. She will play a part later. Of course, once he has a foothold, he takes over the ship, bringing his once sleeping crew to the Enterprise, starting to dismantle the ship. The strength of performances and some very good writing help this episode becomes one of the better ones. It is a battle of wits between Kirk and Kahn that makes this work. I need to watch "The Wrath of Khan" again.

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