Star Trek (1966–1969)
29 user 7 critic

The Devil in the Dark 

The Enterprise is sent to a mining colony that is being terrorized by a mysterious monster, only to find that the situation is not that simple.


Joseph Pevney


Gene L. Coon, Gene Roddenberry (created by)

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Episode complete credited cast:
William Shatner ... Capt. Kirk
Leonard Nimoy ... Mr. Spock
DeForest Kelley ... Dr. McCoy
Ken Lynch ... Vanderberg
James Doohan ... Scott
Brad Weston Brad Weston ... Appel
Biff Elliot ... Schmitter
George Allen George Allen ... Engineer #1 (as George E. Allen)
Jon Cavett Jon Cavett ... Guard
Barry Russo ... Giotto


The Enterprise travels to the planet Janus 6 to assist the mining colony there. Kirk, Spock and McCoy beam down to the planet where Chief Engineer Vanderberg tells of a creature loose in the mine tunnels killing some of his men. The monster seems to appear out nowhere then disappears just as quickly. Finding that the creature, known as a Horta, lives in a newly opened part of the underground mining complex, Spock uses the Vulcan mind meld to determine why it is killing the miners. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


TV-PG | See all certifications »


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English | Latin

Release Date:

9 March 1967 (USA) See more »

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Did You Know?


"No Kill I" was the name of a Star Trek-themed punk rock band. See more »


Spock says he's surprised that the "roof" over Kirk's head in a cave had collapsed. Since the caves are miles underground, Spock would have likely used the word 'ceiling'. See more »


Mr. Spock: Captain, there are literally thousands of these tunnels in this general area alone. Far too many to be cut by the one creature in an ordinary lifetime.
Capt. Kirk: Then we're dealing with more than one creature, despite your tricorder readings, or - we have a creature with an extremely long lifespan.
Mr. Spock: Or, it is the last of a race of creatures which made these tunnels. If so, if it is the only survivor of a dead race, to kill it would be a crime against science.
See more »

Alternate Versions

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


Referenced in South Park: Spookyfish (1998) See more »


Star Trek Theme
Written by Alexander Courage
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User Reviews

The Horta, not life as we know it
1 September 2013 | by bkoganbingSee all my reviews

Leonard Nimoy's Vulcan mind meld proves of invaluable assistance in this Star Trek episode. Life may not look anything like it does on earth and it may not even function bodily as we do on earth. But life can be found in the strangest of places.

Consider this planet which looks to be made of solid rock, yet something is killing off the miners in Ken Lynch's crew. Which is why he sent a distress call and the Enterprise responds.

Lynch's men are not being killed, in fact they're being burned to a crisp. It's being done by a creature we learn calls itself a Horta and to our eyes it's not aesthetically pleasing.

This Star Trek story reduces life to a problem of communication. The Horta has a very good reason for doing what it does.

It's a good moral this story has, all we need in the Universe is better communication.

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