Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Space Seed

From Wikipedia:

"Space Seed" is a first-season episode of Star Trek: The Original Series, that was first broadcast on February 16, 1967 and repeated on August 24, 1967. It is episode #22, production #24, written by Gene L. Coon and Carey Wilber, based on a story by Carey Wilber, and directed by Marc Daniels. It went on to serve as a basis for the 1982 film Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan

The episode guest-stars Ricardo Montalbán as Khan Noonien Singh, and Madlyn Rhue as Lt. Marla McGivers.

Overview: The crew of the Enterprise awakens a powerful dictator from Earth's war-torn past.


Of course, this one is fucking great, easily in the top five. I mean, it's a great story, with some fascinating sci-fi ideas, most notably the notion that selective genetics might do us all in someday, but it's also got the old concept of the space travellers from the past frozen in suspended animation. Wonderful stuff. It's also anti-authoritarian, narratively asserting that strong charismatic leaders shouldn't be trusted, and you just have to know that I love that.

But what really makes this episode hum and zing is the acting. Ricardo Montalbán and William Shatner are cut from the same cloth. They're both way bigger than life, and amazingly comfortable in that shape and size. It's almost as though they feed off of each other, getting better with each scene. Khan is easily Kirk's greatest and most worthy adversary.

Go watch "Space Seed" right now.

"Well, either choke me or cut my throat."