Did you all know that you can watch all of the old classic Star Trek episodes online absolutely free? Well you can, and it’s awesome.
Most of you are most likely clicking away, not caring about a cheesy sci-fi show from the 1960s. Bear with me a moment, though.
Take for example, the episode titled A Taste of Armageddon. It’s sci-fi, for sure, with transporting, and phasers, and silly costumes. But the story is really very good. In this episode the Enterprise is sent to Eminiar VII to help establish diplomatic relations with Eminiar VII and its sister planet, Vendikar. When they get there they discover the planets have been at war for 500 years, and what’s more they are warring via computer. One planet “attacks” and the other planet gets a printout of name of the casualties. Those who are on the casualties list have a set time period to turn themselves in to be termination by stepping inside a disintegration booth.
That’s the setup. The rest of the episode is mostly Kirk trying to get the people from Eminiar VII to realize how stupid the above is. Or you could say a big chunk of the episode is about how stupid war in general is.
Some of my favorite quotes from the episode:
“Sir, there is a multi-legged creature crawling on your shoulder.”
– Spock, before treating the guard to a Vulcan nerve pinch
“Death, destruction, disease, horror… that’s what war is all about, Anan. That’s what makes it a thing to be avoided. But you’ve made it neat and painless – so neat and painless, you’ve had no reason to stop it, and you’ve had it for five hundred years. Since it seems to be the only way I can save my crew, my ship… I’m going to end it for you – one way or another.”
– Kirk, on Eminiar and Vendikar’s situation.
“All right. [War is] instinctive. But the instinct can be fought. We’re human beings with the blood of a million savage years on our hands… But we can stop it! We can admit that we’re… killers. But we’re not going to kill today. That’s all it takes! Knowing that we’re not going to kill… today!”
The episode ended with this, which made me smile:
Spock: Captain, you almost make me believe in luck.
Captain James T. Kirk: Why, Mr. Spock, you almost make me believe in miracles.
If you’re really interested, check out Tor.com’s Star Trek Re-Watch, in which they are viewing and rating each episode of the classic Star Trek episodes.