TREK-A-DAY: And the Children Shall Lead
EPISODE FIFTY-SEVEN: And The Children Shall Lead
Pop quiz: what’s the only thing than an omnipotent being testing the Enterprise? Omnipotent CHILDREN testing the Enterprise. Arrrrgghhhhh.
When the Enterprise finds a bunch of colonists dead of suicide, their children then run out and start playing amongst the bodies. After standing in a “bad feeling cave” they go back to the ship, where the children summon a green ghost in vaugely “bad space Shakespeare” garb, a remanent of a long-dead warrior species. The ghost is empowering and corrupting the kids, and is described is basically (and described as) evil incarnate, sort of. He proves this by speaking in a monotone and glowing green. There’s legend and myth that provide the key to realizing there’s a ghost, not before it has given the kids the power to mess with and control everyone, by waving a “rock paper scissors” fist. Dumb. The kids also summon the ghost by singing an incredibly stupid song. Ugh.
There is, however, an absolutely awesome moment: the crew has been fooled into thinking they are still in orbit, so Kirk orders two security guards beamed down…to no planet. He literally just beams two red-shirts into space, killing them. AWESOME.
Some other wackiness as the omnipotent kids mess with everyone’s fears:
-The kids make Sulu see swords on the monitor, flying at the ship which apparently scares the hell out of him (me too, now that I think of it. SPACE SWORDS!)
-Uhura sees herself covered in ‘old and dying’ make-up and has a panic attack (not understanding just how glamorous older Nichelle Nichols would look)
-Spock disobeys orders…still pales in comparison to space swords.
-Kirk gets really scared he’s losing command, but plays it like he needs to pee…for all the many times we’ve had sentiments like this expressed, it seems like they told Kirk to just go for broke on this one as he throws himself around and exclaims that he’s losing command and alone…it’s a cheap rehash. And lame, compared to space swords.
-Spock suggests the best thing ever: evil children are the problem? Kill them. Vulcan logic=the best.
-Chekov is really bummed about disregarding an order…so he gets kung-fu’d. Bit of a call back to Mirror Mirror, here as Chekov leads a minor mutiny.
-Kirk solves the problem by showing them footage of themselves happy and playing with their parents…THEN IMAGES OF THEIR DEAD PARENTS. They cry and Kirk wins.
Moral of the story?
Space daggers are a navigator’s greatest fear.