19 November 2011

Trek Review: For the World is Hollow and I Have Touched the Sky & The Tholian Web

For the World is Hollow and I Have Touched the Sky

Fabribi Old ManThe Enterprise comes across a giant generational ship disguising itself as an asteroid on a collision course with Daran V, a planet with a population of 3.724 million.

In the meantime, McCoy finds that he has a rare and terminal illness giving him less than a year to live. Kirk informs Starfleet immediately and asks for a replacement although McCoy insists he can still perform his duties properly.

Kirk, Spock and McCoy investigate the asteroid and are set upon by a 'welcoming party' who attack them. Brought below the surface, the landing party meet priestess Natira who introduces them to their world, Yonada and the Oracle who immobilises the team with an energy beam.

Natira appears to take a liking to McCoy, which Kirk suggests he use to learn more about the civilisation living on Yonada. Natira seeks permission from the Oracle to take McCoy as her husband, which is approved if McCoy were to submit to becoming Fabrini and having the Instrument of Obedience (a pain device) installed.

Eventually, McCoy learns of a book that reveals information about the Yonada. Spock is able to use this information to reprogram the Oracle and correct Yonada's course while discovering a vast medical database that includes a cure for McCoy's illness. Natira has her Instrument of Obedience removed and stays aboard Yonada to lead her people while McCoy returns to the Enterprise.

One of the better episodes of Season Three so far with the story of a generational ship on its way to a new world for its inhabitants. Also a nice episode for McCoy to see a bit more attention and romance for a change.

Overall Rating: 6/10

The Tholian Web

Enterprise trapped in a Tholian webThe Enterprise attempts to rescue the starship Defiant when it is set upon by a Tholian ship and Captain Kirk appears lost forever.

The starship Defiant is discovered in a state of interphase, where it appears but sensors cannot detect it. A landing party from Enterprise head over to find the crew all dead, the result of an apparent mutiny. The crew appear to have suffered insanity before killing each other. The Defiant soon begins to dissolve and the landing party prepare to beam back to Enterprise. All except Kirk make it back.

Spock deduces the Defiant and Kirk have slipped into a parallel universe and interphase occurs when the two universes touch. He calculates when the next interphase should occur but the arrival of a Tholian ship changes everything. The Tholian's ask the Enterprise to withdraw from Tholian territory, but agree to allow them to stay until the Defiant reappears based on Spock's instructions.

At the calculated point, the Defiant does not appear and the Tholian's attack the Enterprise. In sickbay, an officer lashes out and is subdued by hypospray, McCoy determines that the area of space they are in affects the human nervous system. Spock orders for the Tholian ship to be disabled, which in turn sends the Enterprise adrift. Another Tholian ship arrives, connects with the original ship and they begin constructing an energy web around the Enterprise. Spock realises if the web is completed, there will be no escape.

While Spock assumes command, images of Kirk floating through the ship begin appearing to crew members. Realising Kirk is still trapped in interphase, Spock and Scotty calculate the next time he will appear and attempt a rescue, meanwhile McCoy finds a way to counteract the affects of the space around them on the crew. At the next interphase, Kirk is beamed aboard and while repelling a Tholian tractor beam, the Enterprise is propelled out of the Tholian web.

On its own, this is a decent episode - it is made all the more interesting with the follow-up/prequel Enterprise episodes 'In a Mirror, Darkly' which tell us where the Defiant ended up after the events of this episode. It's hard to determine the purpose of the Tholian web except to slowly trap a starship - the Tholian's must have more effective weapons than this. Again, the before mentioned episodes from Enterprise show the Tholian web in action.

The Defiant is the third Constitution class starship the Enterprise encounters with her entire crew dead. The other two include the Constellation and the Exeter and we shouldn't forget the Intrepid which wasn't shown on screen. The fact that McCoy is able to find a way to counteract the effects makes you wonder what the Chief Medical Officer aboard the Defiant was doing - all too often it's only the Enterprise and her crew that can overcome these things - I guess that's why we have a show about their adventures!

My only complaint is that the Enterprise's escape from the web isn't explained too well and just seems to happen. In remastered form, this episode looks great with the new effects for the Defiant and Tholian ships.

Overall Rating: 6.5/10

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