Trompé Setsuled (setsuled) wrote,
Trompé Setsuled

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Plot Spray

I'm glad I'm not the kind of Trekkie who has to obsessively retroactively make canonical sense of sloppy writing on Star Trek or I think watching "Miri" and "Conscience of the King" back to back would give me a nervous breakdown.

"Miri" has the Enterprise discovering a planet that is an exact duplicate of Earth in terms of oceans and continent shapes. This is revealed at the beginning, but no-one ever refers to it again or seems particularly interested in speculating why and how this occurred. On the planet are the ruins of a civilisation that resembles Earth in the 60s. The only people left are children we later learn are hundreds of years old because of an immortality potion the adults came up with centuries back. The drawback is it kills you when you enter puberty.

Kirk beams down with McCoy, Spock, Yeoman Rand, and two red shirts. Red shirts are known for dying, but these two took the unique route of just disappearing for a large portion of the middle of the episode. The group is stranded on the planet when they catch the now apparently airborne disease created by the ancient potion and are slowly dying and can't risk going back to the ship to contaminate everyone. There's a gang of misfit kids who make things difficult for the crew by decoying them out of the hospital lab where McCoy and Spock are working on a cure, then stealing their communicators while they're gone because for some reason every single one of them took off their communicators and left them on the desks. This is horrible because McCoy only has seven days to find the cure and it'll be harder without access to the Enterprise computers. One would think the two security officers, still armed, would be able to handle a pack of children to get the communicators back, but, then, one would think these security officers would also have communicators of their own, two reasons I guess the episode tried to carefully distract us from the fact that it had established the two fellows as being there.

Kirk's love interest in the episode is a prepubescent girl who has a crush on him. With her help, he has to reason with the gang of children. All the logical inconsistencies of the episode apparently in service of the idea that sometimes adults do know best and kids ought to listen to them.

"The Conscience of the King" is named after a line from Hamlet and involves the head of an acting troupe, Karidian, who may be an infamous mass murderer whom only Kirk and one other guy are capable of identifying. This is repeated again and again throughout the episode despite the fact that we see Kirk comparing photographic records of both the troupe leader and the mass murderer.

And, despite the fact that the photos make it clear they're both the same person, much of the episode is about Kirk investigating whether or not this is so. He conceals his investigation and motives from Spock and McCoy for absolutely no reason.

Kirk's love interest in the episode is Karidian's daughter who's introduced playing Lady Macbeth with her father playing Macbeth. Yes, Karidian, the guy in charge of the troupe, cast his daughter as his wife. And no-one mentions this once. Although the episode is built around Shakespeare references, it's clearly written by someone with an extremely weak grasp of Shakespeare as is reinforced by the climactic scene where there's an argument about whether Karidian should be allowed to go back on stage to finish a performance when he's just left the stage in his role as the ghost of Hamlet's father after having just been talking to Hamlet, the last time the Ghost appears in the play except for an off-stage line.

This episode's such a mess, it's hard to see if it had any heart at all. There's something in Karidian's argument that the people he killed were due to a decision he had to make in order to save more lives, but this is a bit lost under the laughable over the top acting from the guy playing Karidian. Maybe not as laughable as some of this dialogue, though;

Twitter Sonnet #357

Autumn wheel chairs turn their balloons yellow.
Garlic oil gives lanterns aroma.
The man with A shaped hair's a kind fellow.
Shuttle crafts sway while treating glaucoma.
Experience starts with spatial guitar.
Inverse party favours intensify.
Piñatas portend the backyard red star.
Don't be ashamed if you must calcify.
Orange teeth conceal mashers soundly sleeping.
Jelly beans may have marbles in their midst.
Every straw on the camel's worth keeping.
Shouting cats clammed up in the Blitz.
The twelve vegetables of dusk melt to black.
Powers circle the festive hats they lack.
Tags: mess, science fiction, star trek, television
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