Star Trek (1966–1969)
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The Savage Curtain 

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Kirk, Spock, Abraham Lincoln and Vulcan legend Surak are pitted in battle against notorious villains from history for the purpose of helping a conscious rock creature's understanding of a concept he does not understand, "good vs. evil".


Herschel Daugherty


Gene Roddenberry (created by), Gene Roddenberry (teleplay by) | 3 more credits »





Episode complete credited cast:
William Shatner ... Capt. Kirk
Leonard Nimoy ... Mr. Spock
DeForest Kelley ... Dr. McCoy
Lee Bergere ... Abraham Lincoln
Barry Atwater ... Surak
Phillip Pine ... Col. Green
James Doohan ... Scott
George Takei ... Sulu
Nichelle Nichols ... Uhura
Walter Koenig ... Chekov
Arell Blanton Arell Blanton ... Lt. Dickerson
Carol Daniels Carol Daniels ... Zora (as Carol Daniels DeMent)
Bob Herron ... Kahless (as Robert Herron)
Nathan Jung Nathan Jung ... Ghengis Khan


The Enterprise's sensor readings indicate a planet unsuitable for any carbon-based life at the level of a developed civilization. Suddenly they get an apparition in space from someone who looks like and claims to be Abraham Lincoln. He insists on them checking him out and coming over to a small part on the planet surface (which has suddenly developed a perfect atmosphere for humans). He is received with full presidential honors and Kirk and Spock agree to beam down with him, but as they do, phasers and tricorders fail to dematerialize with them, and communicators won't work. There they meet Surak, the greatest Vulcan of all time, equally convincing. The quartet is greeted by a creature consisting of molten rock who presents them to notorious historical villains Ghengis Khan, Colonel Green, Zora and the Klingon Kahless the Unforgettable. They're told the teams represent good versus evil and must battle to the death against each other to teach the creature their concept. When Kirk ... Written by KGF Vissers

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TV-PG | See all certifications »


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Release Date:

7 March 1969 (USA) See more »

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Did You Know?


A Star Trek trading card set gave Colonel Green's full name as Edward Featherstone Green, but this was superseded by the last few episodes of Star Trek: Enterprise (2001) where he was spoken of as Phillip Green. See more »


In the opening shot of the bridge with Kirk in his captain's chair, you can see Bill Shatner looking at the camera filming him from his right before he turns his eyes to the main view screen. See more »


Dr. McCoy: What's all this poppycock about life-forms on this planet, Spock? The surface is molten lava, the atmosphere is poisonous...
See more »

Alternate Versions

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


Referenced in Trekkies 2 (2004) See more »

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User Reviews

Giants from history
30 August 2014 | by bkoganbingSee all my reviews

This episode shows how truly tired the Star Trek writers were getting. At least twice before William Shatner was captured by aliens and put into combat situations for some gain or amusement of superior aliens. In this one he has Leonard Nimoy for company and a pair of giants from earth and Vulcan history. Lee Bergere and Barry Atwater playing Abraham Lincoln and Surak the founder of Vulcan logic philosophy.

Some volcanic rock creatures with some amazing powers have decided to see what the concepts of good and evil are all about. They also recreate four people who are considered villains in universal history.

Really though, to make this truly even as it seems only contemporary good had anything to lose I would have had two people defined as evil in the Star Trek world also competing. That would have made it more interesting.

Star Trek prime was grinding to a halt and this is why.

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