These Are The Voyages-Star Trek TOS Remastered and Reconsidered


Wow, thanks for posting that. That’s a great read. I stopped after a few sections since it’s getting into spoiler territory as it gets more and more into the exceptions and other circumstances. That’s a really well done page.

It’s also interesting that according to that page, you can order a General Order 24, which is to eradicate all life on a planet. And it’s reference for that is this episode (“Taste of Armageddon”).

That’s funny, because I had assumed that Kirk was making up General Order 24 to communicate something to Scotty. That he was bluffing. But that wiki assumes that General Order 24 is a real thing you can order.


Only because of that episode.🧐

Deus ex machina again. :)


I actually half suspected it was some kind of Corbomite Maneuver bluff myself, like at the end Scotty would saunter up to Kirk and say, ‘And what was General Order 24, exactly?’ and Kirk would shrug and give that charming smile, cut to credits.

Mainly because I’m a little surprised the Federation has something like a General Order 24 on the books. I wonder if it was ever invoked? But I guess going by Memory Alpha we’ll never hear it mentioned again. Except in what I assume are non-canon stuff like comic books.


Hey, at the end of the episode, does Kirk say “Beam us up Scotty” or something to that effect? Beam Me Up Scotty is such a famous phrase, but I don’t think it’s been said on the show up to now. But we were finally a situation where Scotty is actually in a position where it would make sense for Kirk to say that at the end.


Garth did it too (Spoiler):

Of course things were a bit different in his circumstance…

I am LORD Navaronegun!


Hmm, I don’t recall anything in TOS that limits the Prime Directive to first contact or non-spacefaring societies. Wikipedia suggests this episode violates the Prime Directive too, though the agree it was always a vague directive.


I was suggesting that the Prime Directive applied primarily in first contact situations based off memory, but going back through the Memory Alpha link contradicts that. Still, I think the argument made for this episode is that, as a starfaring society, they would have or could have come into contact with Starfleet or some other spacefaring society sooner or later. As far as interfering in their war, that was probably a justifiable reaction since the alternative was turning over the entire crew of the ship for disintegration.


I mean, they were sending an Ambassador. Presumably the Federation Council signed off on that, Prime Directive-wise.


Well that’s why I was figuring this was not a first contact situation, but given that the Prime Directive doesn’t seem to apply only to first contact situations as I was thinking it did, maybe that’s not apropos anymore. But yeah, I have to imagine that sending an envoy to a foreign planet is not a violation of Prime Directive. That would be weird.


Yeah, any potential PD debate surrounding this involves stopping the war.

Really, Archons brings up a lot more thorny, juicy PD debate topics than this episode.

Even if we had actual, in-series written text of the Prime Directive in the Articles of Federation (or an Amendment, or whatever, however it was implemented), it’d still be subject to interpretation, and that interpretation would vary as time (and technology) progressed in-Universe, as well as when precedents were set, mistakes made, lessons learned, etc.

A lot of fan focus/discussion treats it like an eleventh commandment or something akin to that, when, even if we had a written copy, it’d be a written, codified set of principles, implemented and overseen by a government and a bureaucracy (Starfleet) and then carried out on the pointy end of things by Starship Captains far, far away from home.


Yes, agree. I’m just curious if there was any TOS episode where they actually upheld the PD. I can’t recall one off the top of my head. And, probably not, because it would kill a lot of plot lines.


I can’t think of one either, but wasn’t there a TNG episode where Picard sat back and let a civilization die rather than interfere on their behalf?


Are we doing This Side of Paradise next?


Yep, that is next in terms of air date.


And here we go again, this week we’re talking about “This Side of Paradise”, which again, I have no memory of. I feel like I must have seen it, but these kind of brain-altering episodes start to blend together in my brain. I started out thinking it was going to be boring, then I thought it would get stupid, then it got interesting, and then it got boring again.

Kirk and the gang beam down to a Bonanza set and meet a bunch of cowboys who used to be Starfleet scientists. They’re supposed to be dead - what with the planet being bombarded by deadly rays. You’d think somebody would have told them ahead of time that maybe that wasn’t a great planet, but at least Starfleet will come along a few years later and pick up your corpse. But, again, the cowboys aren’t dead, but very happy.

Spock wanders off with a lovely young lady who shows him a planet that shoots confetti at him. He gets a headache, then he gets horny. A little while later Kirk tries to talk to the now much less horny Spock, who tells him to piss off in polite Vulcan terms. Now everybody is getting in touch with their happy but petulant side as they’re all exposed to the confetti-shooting triffids. Kirk soon finds himself alone, and for a bit there I was interested in what was going to happen, with his entire crew mutinied and abandoning ship, and he sat on the bridge alone, pondering his fate. Then a plant that got left on the bridge confettis him, and he gets happy. Then he gets mad, which cures him. How convenient.

Not a whole lot happens this episode, it’s more or less just an inversion of “The Enemy Within” except this time Kirk stays himself while everyone else goes nuts. I’m going to guess that this episode was a cost-saving effort, since they obviously reused some western set and probably had a bunch of house plants lying around for the spore producers. As I mentioned, I liked the little bit where the entire crew of the Enterprise has left Kirk alone onboard and he realizes he’s stuck, he can’t pilot the ship on his own and wouldn’t abandon his crew even if he could. But at that point we’re needing a conclusion so after getting spored himself, finds his inner anger and beats the “infection” such as it is. I guess it’s consistent at least, calling forward? to Star Trek V, where Kirk refuses to be relieved of his pain because it’s part of who he is.

But this one is overall ok. I liked the crew moments with Kirk, Spock and McCoy. I liked Spock’s moment of melancholy after being “cured”, and his remark that for the first time in his life he was happy. But not a lot really happens, it’s kind of a filler episode overall.


The moment where Kirk opens the safe, and looks at his decorations; the memories of his career, and all he accomplished, and hoped to accomplish, still sticks with me on this one. It’s a very touching scene. It’s a pretty good episode at best, not one of the greatest. But Shatner the good actor makes an appearance there for a bit.


See, I thought that scene was kind of lame, like they took a fairly obvious shortcut to remind Kirk of his responsibility which of course trumps all other concerns, alien spore infection be damned. But I don’t have a better idea really.

What I thought was going to end up happening is that Kirk was somehow immune. He makes a remark in his log about how he has somehow so far remained unaffected. But then that plant blows up in his face and he’s gone. Oh well.


I don’t disagree; the writing is mediocre and the use of that scene is ham-handed in terms of plot resolution. I’m just saying that in isolation, it’s touching and one of the few from it that stayed with me in a good way. And Shatner showed his chops. Sometimes it’s a bit of a shame how good all the actors are, but how they just don’t get utilized fully in some of these episodes.

For pure comedy: see Spock threatening Kirk with “death by TV table” in the transporter room with a cliffhanger before the break.

Bum-bum-ba-bum! Bum-bum-ba-bum! Bum-bum-ba-BA!


It was pretty funny that Kirk’s solution to the alien spore infection was to get the entire crew pissed off enough to fight it off but hopefully not kill each other in the process.


The Dr. Bonanza-McCoy fight is so hilariously contrived, it’s High Comedy. I love the lazy-mint-julep MCoy.