The Paradise Syndrome (1967) Star Trek episode - My Rating: {>>>>} (That green ice water you call blood...) {{ Previous - Next}}


Please note that this review is laden with spoilers.

This episode was the only big budget episode in the third season of Star Trek. Captain Kirk loses his memory and marries a beautiful woman on a primitive planet that is threatened by an asteroid and has to wrangle with a master computer to prevent the collision. This plot is reused a mere five episodes later in "For the World Is Hollow and I Have Touched the Sky" where McCoy marries a beautiful woman on an asteroid that threatens a planet and has to wrangle with a master computer to prevent the collision. They use the same footage for both asteroids.

Body count: One. The woman that Kirk marries dies. This woman in particular is responsible for the Star Trek idea that any woman Kirk sleeps with dies at the end of the episode. This woman is actually the only verified shag I can ever remember Kirk having in the original series. There were plenty of other women, but they left you guessing with the other ones.

Plot Outline: The crew of the Starship Enterprise beams down to check out a beautiful world that is in danger of being completely wiped out by an asteroid. This world is inhabited by a mixed group of American Indians still living as they did on earth back in the sixteenth century.

They discover a large monument in the shape of an obelisk. Kirk becomes trapped inside this obelisk and the devices inside strip him of his memory. Spock and McCoy eventually have to return to the ship without the Captain, where they head to the location of the asteroid and make their best attempts to keep it from hitting the planet.

Kirk is soon freed from the obelisk and he encounters the natives. They take him to be a god and he becomes "Kirok" the medicine chief. The Captain may have lost his memory but his personality is intact and he quickly marries the pretty young priestess of the tribe.

Mr. Spock fails in his attempts to deflect the asteroid, but he succeeds in translating the meaning of the writing that was on the obelisk. He returns to the planet in time to save Kirk and use the ancient machinery inside the obelisk to deflect the asteroid.

My Opinion: This episode normally isn't ranked all that highly by most reviewers, but I am going to break from the pack here and say it is wonderful. William Shatner brings his style of overacting to all new heights here, complete with voice-overs showing his internal monologue about how wonderfully happy he is, and how no other man is the universe has what he has. If that wasn't already enough then add in many of the classic Dr. McCoy and Mr. Spock confrontations that make the series great. Stir these all up with some American Indian costumes and you have a pretty great episode.


Notes
  • The lake in this episode also happens to be the fishing hole on "The Andy Griffith Show".
  • This episode is longer chronologically than any other episode in the original series, it lasts for months and months.
  • William Shatner's sideburns get bushier and bushier as the episode goes on, this helps to denote the passage of time. The only problem is that you can see his real ones underneath the fake ones.
  • This episode is the only time in the original series that the Starship Enterprise can be seen firing its gold reflector beam.


Cast and Guest Stars

Directed by: Judd Taylor directed this episode along with three other original Star Trek episodes.

Writing credits: Margaret Armen was responsible for this script. She also wrote The Gamesters of Triskelion and several scripts for the Star Trek Animated Series.

Sources: Star Trek.com, my head, and watching the sucker multiple times. A big thanks to weasello for the format used.

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