Thursday, September 15, 2016

Star Trek: The Original Series (TOS) - Episode 03. The Corbomite Maneuver


Star Trek: The Original Series (TOS)

Episode 03. The Corbomite Maneuver

Story, Script & Trivia


Episode 03. The Corbomite Maneuver

Season:    1
Air Date:    1966-11-10
Stardate:    1512.2
Writer:    Jerry Sohl
Director:    Joseph Sargent
Guests:    Anthony Hall, Clint Howard

On the third day of star-mapping (with Lt. Bailey as navigator in place of Ensign Chekov), the Enterprise discovers a giant multi-colored spinning cube. McCoy, who is giving Kirk his quarterly medical examination, fails to inform Kirk about the crisis, quipping (to himself) "If I jumped every time a light went off around here, I'd end up talking to myself." As a result of the exam, Kirk's diet is restricted to salad, much to his chagrin. The cube, which holds a distance of 1593 m, is 107 m on an edge, and > 11,000 metric tons in weight, has an unknown propulsion system which prompts Scotty to admit that it "beats me what makes it go." As the Enterprise tries to maneuver away from the cube, the cube begins emitting deadly radiation and Kirk is forced to destroy it.

Responding to the destruction of what turns out to have been a warning buoy, a mile-diameter spherical flagship known as the Fesarius rushes to the scene. It is piloted by Balok and belongs to the First Federation. Balok threatens to destroy the Enterprise for violating First Federation space and destroying the warning buoy. Balok gives the crew of the Enterprise 10 minutes to consult with their deity before they are destroyed. Prompted by uncharacteristic curiosity, Spock is able to obtain a visual image of the imposing Balok using the ship's monitor during this waiting period.

Kirk saves the day by pretending that the Enterprise is equipped with a secret "corbomite device" capable of destroying any vessel which attacks it. Balok then offers to spare the crew of the Enterprise by towing it to a First Federation planet, interning the crew there, and only then destroying the Enterprise. However, Kirk waits for the tow ship to expend its power, then pulls away, crippling the power systems of the tow ship.

Kirk, McCoy, and Dave Bailey transport to the main ship Fesarius to render assistance. Here, they meet Balok, the pilot of the ship, who greets them and offers them "tranya" to drink. Kirk and company find that the image of Balok they had glimpsed was a phony puppet and that Balok is actually an unintimidating midget. It turns out that Balok did not trust the information he gleaned from his scan of the Enterprise's data banks and was simply testing the Earth men to see what their true intentions were. Bailey, who had panicked during the crisis on the bridge of the Enterprise, remains on the Fesarius to exchange cultures with Balok.


1 degree to overlap.
Stand by to photograph.
Three days of this now, sir.
Other ships must have made star maps of some of this.
Negative, Lieutenant.
We are the first to reach this far.
Sir, contact with an object.
It's moving toward us.
No visual contact yet.
Deflectors, full intensity.
It's coming at light speed.
Collision course.
Evasive maneuvers, Mr. Sulu.
Object changing direction, too, sir.
Keeps coming at us.
No signal from it, sir.
Still collision course.
Deflectors aren't stopping it.
Sound alarm.
It's slowing down, Mr. Spock.
Countermand alarm.
All engines full stop.
Visual contact.
Ahead slow.
Steer a course around it, Mr. Sulu.
It's blocking the way!
Quite unnecessary to raise your voice, Mr. Bailey.
All engines stop.
Sound the alert.
Bridge to all decks-- condition alert.
All decks-- condition alert.
Captain Kirk to the bridge.
Space-- the final frontier.
These are the voyages of the starship Enterprise.
Its five-year mission--
to explore strange new worlds...
to seek out new life and new civilizations...
to boldly go where no man has gone before.
Captain's Log, star date 1512.2.
On our third day of star mapping,
an unexplained cubical object
blocked our vessel's path.
On the bridge,
Mr. Spock immediately ordered general alert.
My location--sick bay.
Quarterly physical check.
Just a few seconds more.
Just a few seconds more.
That's a boy. Keep it up.
A little sweat will do you good.
You're killing me.
You're killing me.
You'd be the last one I'd tell.
Kirk here. What's going on?
Have a look at this, Captain.
What's that?
Whatever it is, it's blocking our way.
When we move, it moves.
A vessel of some kind?
Negative. More some type of device.
I'll be right up.
You could see the alarm lights.
Why didn't you tell me?
Finally finished a physical on you.
What am l, a doctor or a moon shuttle conductor?
If I jumped every time a light came on,
I'd end up talking to myself.
All decks alert.
[Alarm Sounds]
All decks alert.
Captain to Bridge.
Spock here.
Any changes?
It seems to want to hold us here.
Any indication of danger?
I'll change first then.
Captain out.
All decks have reported green, Mr. Bailey.
Yes, sir.
The captain will expect a full report on--
The cube's range and position.
I'll have it by then.
Raising my voice back there
doesn't mean I was scared or couldn't do my job.
It means I have a human thing
called an adrenaline gland.
It sounds most inconvenient.
Have you considered having it removed?
Very funny.
You try to cross brains with Spock,
he'll cut you to pieces every time.
Captain to Bridge.
Spock here.
Signs of life?
Have you tried all hailing frequencies?
No answer.
Have the department heads meet me on the bridge.
Already standing by.
Reporting, sir.
Sensors show it is solid,
but its composition is unknown to us.
Lieutenant Uhura.
Hailing frequencies still open, sir.
I get no message from it.
Distance from us-- 1,593 meters, position constant.
Each of its edges measures 107 meters.
Mass, a little under 11,000 metric tons.
Mode of power.
Beats me what makes it go.
I'll buy speculation.
I'd sell it if I had any.
That's a solid cube.
How it can sense us coming,
block us, move when we move--
it beats me.
That's my report.
Life sciences.
Same report.
Sir, we going to just let it hold us here?
We've got phaser weapons.
I vote we blast it.
I'll keep that in mind, Mr. Bailey,
when this becomes a democracy.
Captain's Log, star date 1513.8.
Star maps reveal no indication
of habitable planets nearby.
Origin and purpose of the cube
still unknown.
We've been here, held motionless, for 18 hours.
Anything further, gentlemen?
I believe it adds up to either one of two possibilities.
First, a space buoy of some kind.
And you don't recommend sticking around.
It would make us appear too weak.
It's time for action, gentlemen.
Mr. Bailey--
Bridge to Phaser Gun Crew--
I'll select what kind of action.
I'm sorry, sir. I thought--
Are you explaining?
I haven't requested an explanation.
Now, as I was about to say, Navigator,
plot a spiral course away from the cube.
Yes, sir.
We'll try pulling away from it.
Helmsman to Engine Room,
stand by.
All decks alert.
We're going to try pulling away.
Course plotted and laid in, sir.
Engage, Mr. Sulu.
Quarter speed.
.25, sir.
Still blocking us, sir.
Let's see if it'll give way.
Ahead half speed.
.50, sir.
Radiation from the short end of the spectrum increasing.
All stop. Hold position.
It's still coming toward us.
Range--190 meters.
Radiation increasing.
Power astern, half speed.
Half speed.
Radiation nearing the tolerance level.
Still coming.
Gaining on us.
Engines astern, full speed.
Full speed.
Range--125 meters now.
Helm, give us warp speed.
Warp one, sir.
Radiation at the tolerance level.
Warp two, sir.
Speed is now warp three.
Radiation passing the tolerance level,
entering lethal zone.
Range--51 meters and still closing, sir.
Phaser Crew stand ready.
Phaser Crew reports ready, sir.
Growing. We can take only a few more seconds.
Lock phasers on target.
Mr. Bailey, lock phasers!
Phasers locked on target, sir.
At point-blank range and closing.
Fire main phasers.
Captain's Log, star date 1514.0.
The cube has been destroyed.
Ship's damage--minor.
But my next decision--major.
Probe on ahead or turn back.
Nothing, Captain.
No contacts, no objects in any direction.
Care to speculate on what we'll find
if we go on ahead?
Logically, we'll discover the intelligence
which sent out the cube.
Intelligence different from ours
or superior?
Probably both.
And if you're asking the logical decision to make--
No, I'm not.
The mission of the Enterprise
is to seek out and contact alien life.
Has it occurred to you
that there's a certain...inefficiency
in constantly questioning me on things
you've already made up your mind about?
It gives me emotional security.
Navigator, set a course ahead.
Laid in, sir.
Warp one, sir.
Mr. Bailey--
Phaser crews were sluggish.
You were slow in locking them
into your directional beam.
engineering decks could have been faster, too.
Program a series of simulated attacks
and evasion maneuvers.
Keep repeating the exercise
until we're proficient, gentlemen.
Yes, sir.
Yes, sir.
Your timing is lousy, Jim.
Your men are tired.
Captain's quarters.
Don't you always say
a little suffering is good for the soul?
I never say that.
This is the bridge.
Prepare for simulated attack.
I'm especially worried about Bailey.
Navigator's position's rough enough for a seasoned man.
I think he'll cut it.
Oh? How so sure?
Because you spotted something you liked in him,
something familiar,
Like yourself, say about, oh, 11 years ago?
On the double, deck five!
Give me a green light.
Why, Doctor, you've been reading your textbooks again?
I don't need textbooks
to know you could've promoted him too fast.
Listen to that voice.
Condition alert. Battle stations.
Engineering, deck five, report.
Phaser crews, come on, let's get with it.
Phaser station two, where's your green light?
What's next?
''They're not machines, Jim''?
Well, they're not.
After what they've been through--
Dr. McCoy, I've heard you say
that man is ultimately superior to any mechanical device.
No, I never say that, either.
I could've sworn I heard you say that.
[Communicator Signal]
Kirk here.
Exercise rating, Captain--94%.
Let's try for 100, Mr. Spock.
What are you going to do with that 6%?
I'm going to take it, and I'm going to--
Excuse me, sir.
It's past time you had something to eat, sir.
What the devil is this?
Green leaves?
It's dietary salad, sir.
Dr. McCoy changed your diet card.
I thought you knew.
Your weight was up a couple of pounds. Remember?
Will you stop hovering over me, Yeoman?
I'll change it if you don't like it.
Bring some for the doctor, too.
No, no. I never eat until the crew eats.
Thank you, Yeoman.
You're welcome, sir.
[Bailey] This is the bridge.
All decks prepare to better reaction time
on second simulated attack.
When I find the headquarters genius
that assigned me a female yeoman--
What's the matter, don't you trust yourself?
Battle stations.
Engineering decks alert...
I've already got a female to worry about.
Her name's the Enterprise.
Engineering decks alert.
Phaser crews, let's--
[Sulu] Countermand that.
All decks to battle stations.
This is not a drill.
Repeat--this is not a drill.
Kirk here.
[Spock] We're picking up an object, sir.
Much larger, coming toward us.
Exceptionally strong contact.
Not visual yet.
Distant spectrograph.
Metallic, similar to cube.
Much greater energy reading.
There, sir.
Half speed.
Prepare for evasive action.
Reducing to warp two, sir.
Tractor beam, Captain.
Something's grabbed us--hard.
Engines overloading.
All engines stop.
All engines stopped, sir.
Phaser crews stand ready.
Bridge to phaser crews, stand ready.
Forward phaser, will comply.
All weapons at operational ready.
What's its mass, Mr. Spock?
Reading goes off my scale.
Must be a mile in diameter.
Over 5,000 meters away,
and it still fills the screen.
Reduce image.
Let me see all of it.
Magnification 2.5, sir.
Magnification 18.5, sir.
Ship to ship.
Hailing frequencies open, sir.
This is the United Earth ship Enterprise.
We convey greetings and await your reply.
What is it?
A message...
coming over my navigation beam.
Pick it up.
Switching, sir.
...And trespassed into our star systems.
This is Balok,
commander of the flagship Fesarius
of the First Federation.
Your vessel, obviously the product
of a primitive and savage civilization,
having ignored a warning buoy
and having then destroyed it,
has demonstrated your intention is not peaceful.
We are now considering the disposition of your ship
and the life aboard.
Ship to ship.
Hailing frequencies open, sir.
This is the captain of the Enterprise speaking.
The warning nature of your space buoy was unknown to us.
Our vessel was blocked.
When we attempted to disengage--
Captain, we're being invaded
by exceptionally strong sensor probes,
Our electrical systems, our engines--
No further communication will be accepted.
If there is the slightest hostile move,
your vessel will be destroyed immediately.
They're shutting off some of our systems, Captain.
Extremely sophisticated in their methods.
Does the recorder marker have this on its tapes?
Enough to warn other Earth ships.
Mr. Bailey, dispatch recorder marker.
Mr. Bailey.
Uh, recorder marker dispatched, sir.
Marker on course.
Heading back the way we--
Your recorder marker has been destroyed.
You have been examined.
Your ship must be destroyed.
We make assumption you have a deity or deities
or some such beliefs which comfort you.
We therefore grant you
10 Earth time periods known as minutes
to make preparations.
Might be interesting to see what they look like
if I can locate where that voice is coming from.
Balok's message--
It was heard all over the ship.
Captain to crew.
Those of you who have served for long on this vessel
have encountered alien life-forms.
You know the greatest danger facing us is ourselves,
an irrational fear of the unknown.
But there's no such thing as the unknown--
only things temporarily hidden,
temporarily not understood.
In most cases we have found
that intelligence capable of a civilization
is capable of understanding peaceful gestures.
Surely a life-form advanced enough for space travel
is advanced enough
to eventually understand our motives.
All decks stand by.
Captain out.
Ship to ship.
Hailing frequencies open, sir.
This is the captain of the U.S.S. Enterprise.
We came seeking friendship.
But we have no wish to trespass.
To demonstrate our goodwill,
our vessel will now return the way it came.
[High-pitched Sound]
Lay in a course ahead, Mr. Bailey.
A course?
Plotted and laid in, sir.
Engage, warp factor one.
Warp factor--
There's no response.
Switch to impulse.
All engine systems show dead.
And weapon systems.
Switching to screen.
I believe I can get something visual.
You are wasting time and effort.
There is no escape.
You have eight Earth minutes left.
I was curious to see how they appeared.
Yes, of course you were.
I don't understand this.
Spock's wasting time.
Everybody else just sitting around.
Somebody's got to do something.
Easy, Bailey.
What do they want? Let's find out.
They want us to lose our heads.
We've only got eight minutes left.
7 minutes and 45 seconds.
He's doing a countdown!
Practically end of watch.
Are you all out of your minds?
End of watch?
It's the end of everything.
What are you, robots? Wound-up toy soldiers?
Don't you know when you're dying?
Watch and regulations and orders--
What do they mean?
Bailey, you're relieved!
Escort him to his quarters, Doctor.
Let's go.
Ship to ship.
Hailing frequencies open, sir.
This is the captain of the Enterprise speaking.
It is the custom of Earth people
to try and avoid misunderstanding
whenever possible.
We destroyed your space buoy
as a simple act of self-preservation.
When we attempted to move away from it,
it emitted radiation harmful to our species.
If you've examined our ship and its tapes,
you know this to be true.
[Electronic Humming]
You now have seven minutes left.
4 minutes, 30 seconds.
You have an annoying fascination
for timepieces, Mr. Sulu.
Four minutes.
What's the matter with them out there?
They must know we mean them no harm.
They're certainly aware by now
that we're totally incapable of it.
There must be something to do,
something I've overlooked.
In chess,
when one is outmatched, the game is over.
Is that your best recommendation?
I'm sor--
I regret that I can find no other logical alternative.
Assuming we get out of this, Captain--
Nobody's given up yet.
Well, then about Bailey.
Let me enter it in my medical records
as simple fatigue.
That's my decision, Doctor.
And your mistake.
You overworked him, pushed him,
expected too much from him--
I'm ordering you to drop it.
I have no time for you, your theories,
your quaint philosophies...
I intend to challenge your actions in my records.
I'll state that I warned you.
That's no bluff.
Any time you can bluff me, Doctor--
Three minutes.
All right, Doctor.
Let's hope we have time to argue about it.
Not chess, Mr. Spock.
Do you know the game?
Ship to ship.
Hailing frequencies open, sir.
This is the captain of the Enterprise.
Our respect for other life-forms
requires that we give you this warning.
One critical item of information
that has never been incorporated
into the memory banks of any Earth ship.
Since the early years of space exploration,
Earth vessels have had incorporated into them
a substance known as...
It is a material and a device
which prevents attack on us.
If any destructive energy touches our vessel,
a reverse reaction of equal strength
is created, destroying--
You now have two minutes.
Destroying the attacker!
It may interest you to know
that since the initial use of corbomite
more than two of our centuries ago,
no attacking vessel has survived the attempt.
Death has little meaning to us.
If it has none to you...
then attack us now.
We grow annoyed at your foolishness.
However, it was well played.
I regret not having learned more about this Balok.
He was reminiscent of my father.
May heaven have helped your mother.
Quite the contrary.
She considered herself
a very fortunate Earth woman.
For having other things on your mind? My fault.
I don't how you keep from punching me in the face.
One minute.
I knew he would.
If anyone's interested...
30 seconds.
Request permission to return to post, sir.
Permission granted.
10 seconds.
A very interesting game, this poker.
It does have advantages over chess.
Love to teach it to you.
This is the commander of the Fesarius.
Here it comes. Is it raise or call?
The destruction of your vessel
has been delayed.
We will relent in your destruction
only if we have proof of your corbomite device.
Hold on that.
Let him sweat for a change.
Ship to ship.
Hailing frequencies, sir.
Request denied.
I have visual contact, Captain.
We will soon inform you
of our decision regarding your vessel.
And having permitted your primitive efforts
to see my form,
I trust it has pleased your curiosity.
And now,
another demonstration of our superiority.
I thought the power was off in the galley.
I used a hand phaser, and zap--hot coffee.
Something's going on, Captain.
It's a small ship.
About 2,000 metric tons.
It has been decided
that I will conduct you to a planet
of the First Federation
which is capable of sustaining
your life-form.
There you will disembark and be interned.
Your ship will be destroyed, of course.
Engine systems coming on, Captain.
Do not be deceived
by the size of this pilot vessel.
It has an equal potential to destroy your vessel.
Tractor beam again.
So that you may sustain
your gravity and atmosphere,
your systems are now open.
Escape is impossible
since you are being taken under our power
to your destination.
Any move to escape or destroy this ship
will result in the instant destruction
of the Enterprise and everyone aboard.
We're being towed, sir.
Captain's Log, star date 1514.1.
The Enterprise is in tow.
To this point,
no resistance has been offered.
My plan?
A show of resignation.
Balok's tractor beam has to be
a heavy drain of power on his small ship.
Question-- Will he grow careless?
He's pulling out a little ahead of us.
He's sneaked power down a bit.
Our speed is down to .64 of light.
I want a right angle course.
Shear away from him
no matter which way he turns.
Maximum acceleration when I give the word.
Yes, sir.
It's a strain, Captain.
Engines are overloading.
More power.
We're superheating.
Intermix temperature, 7,400 degrees.
8,000 degrees.
Shear away, Mr. Bailey.
2,000 degrees above maximum.
She'll blow soon!
Now, Mr. Sulu. Impulse power two.
We're breaking free, sir.
All engines stop.
All engines stopped, sir.
Engines need work badly, Captain.
Can you hold it here a few hours?
That may not be wise.
He signaled to the mother ship.
Then we're not home yet.
A signal, Captain.
It's very weak.
It's Balok.
It's a distress signal to the Fesarius.
His engines...are out...
His life-sustaining system
isn't operating.
The message is repeating, sir.
Any reply?
Negative. His signal is growing weak.
Sir, I doubt the mother ship heard it.
Plot a course for it, Mr. Bailey.
For it, Captain?
Dead ahead.
This is the captain speaking.
First Federation vessel is in distress.
We're preparing to board it.
There are lives at stake--
by our standards, alien life--
but lives nevertheless.
Captain out.
Course plotted and laid in, sir.
Mr. Scott, ready the transporter room.
Aye, sir.
Mr. Sulu, bring us to within 100 meters.
Ahead slow.
Ahead slow, sir.
Jim, don't you think--
What's the mission of this vessel, Doctor?
To seek out and contact alien life
and an opportunity to demonstrate
what our high-sounding words mean.
Any questions?
I'll take two men with me--
Dr. McCoy to examine and treat the aliens if necessary,
and you, Mr. Bailey.
The face of the unknown.
I think I owe you a look at it.
Yes, sir.
Captain, request permission to--
Denied. If I'm wrong,
if it's a trap, I want you here.
Transporter ready?
Well, yes, sir, but it's risky.
We're locked into their main deck.
Air sample?
Breathable. In fact,
a slightly higher oxygen content than our own.
phaser weapon.
Thank you, Scotty. Ready, Doctor?
No, but you won't let that stop you.
Bend low, gentlemen.
It reads pretty cramped over there.
Ready to transport.
It's a...dummy.
A puppet of some kind.
I'm Balok.
Welcome aboard.
I'm Captain Kirk.
And McCoy and Bailey.
Be comfortable.
Go ahead.
Be seated.
We must drink.
This is tranya.
I hope you relish it as much as I.
Commander Balok...
I know, I know.
A thousand questions.
But first, the tranya.
Commander, that puppet...
My alter ego, so to speak.
In your culture,
he would be Mr. Hyde to my Jekyll.
You must admit he's effective.
You would never have been frightened by me.
And I thought my distress signal
quite clever.
It was a pleasure testing you.
Testing us?
I see.
I had to discover your real intentions.
But you probed our memory banks.
Your records could have been
a deception on your part.
And your crew?
I have no crew, Doctor.
I run everything,
this entire complex, from this small ship.
But I miss company.
Even an alien would be welcome.
Perhaps one of your men
for some period of time.
An exchange of information, cultures.
Yes. Both our cultures would benefit.
Do you know where we can find a volunteer, Mr. Bailey?
Me, sir. I'd like to volunteer.
You represent Earth's best, then.
No, sir, I'm not.
I'll make plenty of mistakes.
But you'd find out more about us that way,
and I'd get a better officer in return.
I see.
We think much alike, Captain,
You and l.
Now, before I bring back the Fesarius,
let me show you my vessel.
It is not often I have this pleasure.
Yes, we're very much alike, Captain.
Both proud of our ships.

Episode Trailer

Episode Trailer


Episode 03. The Corbomite Maneuver

When Scotty told the landing party to bend down because the ceilings were low in Balok's ship, everyone put their hands on their legs but when they arrived, Dr. McCoy's hands were not on his legs anymore.
In the very first shot in this episode of the Enterprise and the quick zoom in towards the bridge the front of the warp nacelles had short gold spikes on them and the bridge dome was slightly different. This was due to the staff reusing footage from the beginning of the "The Cage."
Spock states that the Fesarius (Balok's ship) "must be a mile in diameter". Yet any one of the small spheres that make up the Fesarius dwarfs the Enterprise. If the Enterprise is about 300m long, the Fesarius would have to be around 6 km in diameter--considerably larger than a mile.
Lt. Uhura had a science patch on her uniform but she had a command (gold) uniform.
Sulu said that the cube's angles each measure 107 meters, the Enterprise is 289 meters long, if the cube was 107 meters in size, it would have to be about 1/3 the size of the Enterprise!
Kirk calls the Enterprise the "United Earth Ship" (U.E.S.) Enterprise, he should have said "United Space Ship" (U.S.S.)
When Kirk gives his speech shipwide to the crew, in one hallway camera shot a crewman is totally frozen with one foot raised in the air.

Leaving sick bay after his physical, Captain Kirk passes several unnamed crew members. One red shirt, played by Jonathan Goldsmith, gained worldwide fame 40 years later as beer ad character "The Most Interesting Man in the World." Still no name.
37 of 38 (Trivia Rating)

Little Balok is played by Clint Howard, whose brother Ron Howard was starring in another Desilu hit, The Andy Griffith Show (1960). These two shows have many connections in the form of actor crossovers and scenery reuse.
21 of 21 (Trivia Rating)

Captain Balok and his vessel, ''Fesarius'' are affiliated with the "First Federation". Capt. Kirk's ''Enterprise'' is still under the United Earth Space Probe Agency (UESPA, or "you spa") which is mentioned in the next few episodes to be filmed. The names Starfleet and the United Federation of Planets weren't established until near the end of the first season.
17 of 17 (Trivia Rating)

Although the script instructed Leonard Nimoy to emote a fearful reaction upon his first sight of Big Balok, director Joseph Sargent suggested to Nimoy that he ignore what the script called for and instead simply react with the single word "Fascinating." The suggestion of this response helped refine the Spock character and provide him with a now-legendary catchphrase.
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This is the earliest episode of the main series (excluding the two pilots) to be filmed.
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Clint Howard wore a bald-cap as Little Balok. Howard recalls being given the offer of having his head shaved to depict Balok's baldness, but opted against it. Howard has said he was concerned that his bald appearance (however temporary) would subject him to teasing by schoolmates.
12 of 12 (Trivia Rating)

Lieutenant Uhura makes her first appearance wearing a gold "command" uniform, which she retains in her second appearance (in production order, not airing order), Star Trek: Mudd's Women (1966). After that, she traded it in for the iconic red uniform she wears for the rest of the series.
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The alien ship, Fesarius, was made of ping-pong balls glued to a Plaster-of-Paris shell.
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This was the first episode to feature Kirk's famous "Space--the final frontier" monologue in the opening credits.
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First appearances (in production order) of Doctor Leonard McCoy, Lieutenant Nyota Uhura, and Yeoman Janice Rand.
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McCoy says "What am I, a doctor or a moon shuttle conductor?" which can be considered the first of the "doctor not a" quotes. In later days, the quote would have been phrased "I'm a doctor, not a moon shuttle conductor!"
7 of 7 (Trivia Rating)

A line from Big Balok, "We grant you one minute," appears in the preview-trailer, to which Sulu reacts "I knew he would." In the finished product, Balok's line is not heard (apparently lost due to a dubbing editor's mistake), making it unclear what Sulu is talking about.
9 of 10 (Trivia Rating)

This takes place in 2266.
5 of 5 (Trivia Rating)

Spock establishes that he is the product of a Vulcan father and a Terran mother. In Star Trek: Where No Man Has Gone Before (1966) his ancestry was not yet defined, and he was perhaps meant to be only 1/8 or even 1/16 Terran.
5 of 5 (Trivia Rating)

The voices of the two Baloks are provided by Ted Cassidy (Big Balok) and Walker Edmiston (Little Balok), although neither is mentioned in the credits. The Balok voices are sometimes incorrectly attributed to Vic Perrin, who was soon to become Star Trek's leading voiceover ace.
5 of 5 (Trivia Rating)

In this early outing, Leonard Nimoy is still using an odd vocal inflection where he shouts Spock's lines and his tone goes up at the end of sentences. Uhura is in her original gold tunic, instead of the red one which became her trademark. Several men's uniforms sport a taller turtleneck collar than later on.
5 of 5 (Trivia Rating)

Ted Cassidy, who provided the voice of Big Baloc, also played the giant android Ruk in _What Are Little Girls Made Of".
5 of 5 (Trivia Rating)

When Kirk and crew first begin to examine the small alien vessel, there is a schematic panel on the wall which is usually seen in the engine room of the Enterprise.
4 of 4 (Trivia Rating)

Balok displays a knowledge of Earth popular culture. When discussing the "false" Balok, he referred to it as "the Mr. Hyde to my Jekyll". However, the methods that Balok employed in this episode actually bore much more similarity to The Wizard of Oz.
4 of 4 (Trivia Rating)

The set of Balok's room was a re-dress of the Enterprise conference room set. It was later recycled to create the bar in Star Trek: Court Martial (1967) (later reused in Star Trek: The Trouble with Tribbles (1967)).
3 of 3 (Trivia Rating)

Robert H. Justman filmed George Takei's reaction shot in which he turned around and looked at Kirk, reused in dozens of future episodes whenever something strange appeared on the viewscreen. A similar clip was filmed of Walter Koenig during season two.
3 of 3 (Trivia Rating)

This is the fourth episode in which Captain Kirk appears bare-chested.
11 of 17 (Trivia Rating)

Spock confesses an ignorance of poker, and he probably wouldn't enjoy the game since he said in Star Trek: The Doomsday Machine (1967) that Vulcans do not bluff.
2 of 2 (Trivia Rating)

When addressing the Fesarius, Kirk identifies his ship as the United Earth Ship Enterprise, nomenclature which was never used again.
2 of 2 (Trivia Rating)

The "tranya" served by Balok was actually grapefruit juice. Clint Howard had to pretend very hard to like the drink, which he found distasteful.
2 of 2 (Trivia Rating)

James Doohan's wartime injury to his right hand is briefly visible in the conference room scene when he passes a coffee thermos. Generally this was carefully hidden off-camera, but it can also be seen when he's holding a phaser in Star Trek: Catspaw (1967), as he carries a large bundle of tribbles in Star Trek: The Trouble with Tribbles (1967), as he reverses the probe polarity in Star Trek: That Which Survives (1969) and very briefly in freeze-frame when he's reaching into the box to restrain the evil dog in Star Trek: The Enemy Within (1966).
2 of 2 (Trivia Rating)

This is the first episode to include pointed sideburns on all of the male crew members.
2 of 2 (Trivia Rating)

Although we never learn the specific dimensions of the Enterprise during the series, it is established visually to be bigger than the cube, which Sulu says is 107 meters on each side.
2 of 2 (Trivia Rating)

There are signs of this being an early production, such as a bridge chair squeaking rather loudly near the end of the episode (when Uhura is listening in on Balok's distress call), as well as hearing the ship doors, made of wood, slide on the stage floor as they open and close. Stage noises were edited out of later episodes.
2 of 2 (Trivia Rating)

The final draft of this script, dated 3 May 1966, is quite different from the aired version:

. The character of Uhura is not present. Dave Bailey is the communications officer, and he does not "flip out" as he does in the aired episode. Lieutenant Ken Easton is the navigator. . Many bits of character-building are also absent. There are no flypaper, chess or poker analogies - Kirk simply decides to bluff Balok out of the blue. . The planet where Balok intends to imprison the Enterprise crew is named Carpi. There is also no reference in this draft to: . Kirk's salad . Curiosity on Spock's part as to what Balok looks like - Balok initiates visual contact with the Enterprise . Spock's opinion that Balok reminds him of his father or Scotty's retort.
1 of 1 (Trivia Rating)

A line from Balok warning the crew they had one minute left was not recorded, leaving Sulu to comment, "I knew he would" in response to nothing. The preview has an unused cut of Balok saying, "We grant you one minute" that could be modified and dubbed into the episode.
1 of 1 (Trivia Rating)

This is one of the few episodes of the original which places a time stamp on the events. It is placed two centuries after mankind's early space explorations, or roughly the late 22nd century. Also, in Star Trek: The Motion Picture (1979), the V'ger probe is said to be roughly two-hundred years old, placing the film in the same era. It would later be established in Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan (1982) and Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home (1986) that these adventures took place in the late 23rd century. Also, in the Star Trek Chronology by Michael Okuda, Okuda states that Gene Roddenberry made a request for a Star Trek timeline while producing Star Trek: The Next Generation (1987), unaware Okuda was already working on such a time line. This chronology was used to firmly establish the calendar date of TNG (2364) and ALL Star Trek dates, including The Original Series, were established using this date. Therefore, it was retroactively established that the original series took place three hundred years after its broadcast date, placing this episode in 2266. Obviously, when the Original Series was being filmed the exact time line had yet to be established, but one way to reconcile the dialogue "mistake" is to assume that Kirk was referring not to the Moon landing, but to Zefram Cochrane's warp flight of 2063 - which would put this episode 203 years after that event.) It is also possible that this statement was only part of the bluff.
1 of 1 (Trivia Rating)

The dimensions (107 meters on a side) and mass (11,000 metric tons) of the cube imply an average density of 9 kg per cubic meter, only 7 times that of earth air at sea level. No known solid materials are that light, although aerogels (which are mostly air) are lighter.
1 of 1 (Trivia Rating)

Sulu has transferred to the command division from the sciences division following his premiere in Star Trek: Where No Man Has Gone Before (1966). This the first episode in which he occupies his familiar seat at the helm. The change was made because the producers realized there's no need for an astrophysicist in every episode, yet they had to have someone sitting at the helm.
1 of 1 (Trivia Rating)

Michael Dunn (popular at the time for his role as Dr. Lovelace in The Wild Wild West (1965)) was an early choice for the part of Balok. However, Gene Roddenberry thought something "much more weird" would be more effective, leading to six-year-old Clint Howard being cast. Dunn later appeared as Alexander in Star Trek: Plato's Stepchildren (1968).
1 of 1 (Trivia Rating)

Both Stewart Moss and Bruce Mars were considered for the role of Dave Bailey before Anthony D. Call was eventually cast. Some sources list both actors as appearing in background roles in the episode; however, they seem to be cut from the final print.
1 of 1 (Trivia Rating)

Many of the extras credited to the extras list were cut from the final print, including Sean Morgan, Bruce Mars and Stewart Moss.
1 of 1 (Trivia Rating)

This episode was originally scheduled to air much earlier than it did, but the large amount of visual effects took several months to complete. The producers had to delay the planned airdate twice, before eventually broadcasting it as the tenth episode of the season.
1 of 1 (Trivia Rating)

In the original version of the series, this was the first episode in which the forward sections of the warp engine nacelles were made to glow, though in the teaser this didn't happen because it seems to have used footage from Star Trek: The Cage (1986). In the remastered version, however, this is no longer true, as the nacelles of the ship are uniformly shown to glow.
1 of 1 (Trivia Rating)

The distinctive bridge sound effects of TOS are first heard in this episode. Early episodes of The Twilight Zone (1959) previously featured this distinctive computer sound.
1 of 1 (Trivia Rating)

Both in terms of its order on the production schedule, and its order of televised broadcast, this episode marks the very first time that the Enterprise fires its phasers. The actual burst that the ship fires at the warning buoy is unique to this episode.
1 of 1 (Trivia Rating)

The shot of the ship being towed by the small First Federation pilot vessel, from a perspective behind the nacelles, was re-used countless times in future episodes, with different ships or planets matted in. When it was used later, it was often slowed down, which made it much more grainy than the clear print in this episode. Around halfway in the second season this shot was replaced by a much better-looking new shot of the ship.
1 of 1 (Trivia Rating)

This episode contains a number of "firsts" for the costume department. Although some of the pilots' uniforms were seen on background extras, this is the first episode in which black collars on tunics debut. Nevertheless, some of the uniforms - particularly Spock's - have higher, loose, "turtleneck" black collars than generally appeared throughout the series. In Sulu's first close-up, the zipper built into the collar is clearly visible - because he was wearing a "leftover" from the first two pilots that was retrofitted not quite expertly, with the new black collar.
1 of 1 (Trivia Rating)

This episode saw the initial appearance of skirt uniforms, as well as "plunging neckline" collars for most women. Red operations division tunics were also seen for the first time here, as was the silk, short-sleeved "laboratory" tunic for the CMO. The system of sleeve rank insignia was also more refined in this episode than it had been in either pilot. Noticeably, Kirk first wore the insignia he would display throughout the series, and the rank stripes themselves took on a more wavy, stylized design than the simple bands they had been in the previous pilots, complete with broken bits of braid to denote the ranks of lieutenant jg, lieutenant commander, and captain.
1 of 1 (Trivia Rating)

Beginning with this episode, the men's uniforms featured a "raglan" construction, like that found in crew-neck sweaters, with the tops of the sleeves reaching all the way up to the collar. In the two previous pilots, the uniform sleeves were constructed like those in men's dress shirts, with their tops ending at the upper arm.
1 of 1 (Trivia Rating)

In the bridge scene following the destruction of Balok's cube, several crew members who are repairing the damage can be seen wearing blue uniforms without black collars that were left over from the pilots.
1 of 1 (Trivia Rating)

There are detailed close-ups of some of the engineering station read-outs in this episode.
1 of 1 (Trivia Rating)

Instead of reusing the bridge helm station as in the two pilot episodes, a dedicated transporter console makes its debut. The top was painted black and the intercom stands alone on the top of the console. Beginning with Star Trek: Mudd's Women (1966), the next episode to be filmed, the console was painted its customary reddish-orange seen in all subsequent episodes and the intercom was bracketed by two alert lights.
1 of 1 (Trivia Rating)

The panel seen behind Balok when Kirk, McCoy and Bailey first beam aboard the pilot ship was later used as the main panel in the Enterprise engineering room.
1 of 1 (Trivia Rating)

When Kirk reports to the bridge from the turbolift, a rare camera angle from the elevator illustrates the panel to the right of the main viewscreen, and the two bridge consoles to the left of the science station. These sections were usually rolled out (off-screen) to facilitate filming the navigation console and Spock's station. Like Star Trek: Where No Man Has Gone Before (1966), the turbolift has double doors (the inner is gray; the outer is red), like modern elevators. This feature was later eliminated, probably because it was too cumbersome to maintain.
1 of 1 (Trivia Rating)

The "screen-saver" animation on the main bridge viewscreen from Star Trek: Where No Man Has Gone Before (1966) is just barely visible over Bailey's shoulder during the repair scene after the battle with the cube buoy.
1 of 1 (Trivia Rating)

The colours of the cube buoy reflect on the railings at the front of the bridge. When this perspective was later re-used as the stock view screen shot for the next three seasons, the reflecting lights still showed up on the railings. (A new stock shot of the viewscreen was made in the middle of the second season.)
1 of 1 (Trivia Rating)

This was the first regular episode of Star Trek (1966) produced following the two pilots.
1 of 1 (Trivia Rating)

A front-on close-up of Balok, without the rippling distortion of his image as seen on the main viewing screen, was the final shot of past episodes that was displayed in many of the series' end credits. Robert H. Justman explained that he superimposed the credit "Executive in Charge of Production Herbert F. Solow" over Balok's image as an in-joke. Justman later secured a screen grab of the shot and kept it in his home office, in what he called the "cheapest, junkiest black frame" he could find.
1 of 1 (Trivia Rating)

This is the first episode to use the "cello" theme arranged by Fred Steiner. The DVD and Blu-Ray prints incorrectly used the original theme recorded for Star Trek: The Man Trap (1966).
1 of 1 (Trivia Rating)

In the 1970s, the Mego toy company used Balok's "puppet head" to create "The Keeper" action figure doll (despite Balok not being Talosian).
1 of 1 (Trivia Rating)

Part of engineering's location is referred to in this episode. Kirk orders Bailey to coordinate drills with engineering, and Bailey says on two distinct occasions "On the double, Deck 5, give me the green light!" and also "Engineering Deck 5, report! Come on phaser crews, let's get with it!". He could either be referring to an engine room in the saucer on deck 5 or a separate "engineering deck 5" that exists in lower levels (where some of engineering is referenced to be in episodes like Star Trek: The Enemy Within (1966), Star Trek: The Conscience of the King (1966), and Star Trek: Day of the Dove (1968)).
1 of 2 (Trivia Rating)

At the Rally to Restore Sanity and/or Fear on October 30, 2010, Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert referred to this episode by name after riffing on the dangers of "corbomite" in bottled water; they also mentioned Uhura's incongruous uniform, as described above.

Tags: #startrektos50thanniversary #startrektos #StarTrek50 #startrek #MrSpock #captainkirk #StarTrekBeyond #tribble #uhura #McCoy #williamshatner #Chekov #sulu #LeonardNimoy #nbc #television #tvshow #scifi #sciencefiction #StarTrekDiscovery #gobeyond #stardate #enterprise

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