‘THE ENEMY WITHIN’ (TOS)
Please feel free to comment on my review.
‘The Enemy Within’ is one of my favourite ‘Star Trek’ episodes from ‘The Original Series’. This is where we get two Captain Kirks in the same episode. One of them is good; one of them is very evil.
There is an influence of ‘Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde’ in this episode. During a transporter accident, Kirk is split into two halves and Spock and Bones have help to find a way to put Kirk’s halves together again.
I was impressed by William Shatner’s performances as both the evil and the really good Captain Kirk that we know and love. It is very clever writing and it is very clever visual effects works for this time.
I was anxious about why this had happened when Kirk was split into two halves and what harm the evil Kirk was making aboard the Enterprise whilst the good Kirk was unaware of it. It made so tense.
With the evil Kirk, he’s so aggressive, angry, lustful and violent. He threatens Bones in his sick bay to give him a bottle of brandy and makes sexual advances on Yeoman Rand when he’s in her quarters.
With the good Kirk, he’s compassionate, caring and noble as ever. But there’s something missing from him, as he’s lost his sense of making a decision which is not like the Captain Kirk we know well.
Spock surmises that Kirk needs to have both his negative as well as his positive sides inside of him in order to make command decisions. It’s a really tough choice as Kirk is reluctant to take the bad side.
I was impressed with the concepts and ideas behind this story, as I initially assumed the evil Kirk was like an alien duplicate of some kind. When the episode developed, it became a lot more interesting.
There’s also another problem that the good Kirk faces when he has to make decisions aboard the Enterprise. Apparently there are some crewmembers, including Sulu, on the freezing planet below.
The Enterprise can’t dare to transport Sulu and the others back aboard via the transporter, since it was the transporter that duplicated Kirk in the first place. They could also become duplicated in two.
Unless Kirk, Spock and Bones find a way to rescue Sulu and the others from being frozen to death on the planet below, there’s no chance. This is a hard choice for Kirk as he’s making risks with decisions.
I enjoyed seeing Grace Lee Whitney as Janice Rand in this episode again. It was interesting to see how Janice interacted with the evil Kirk, although it was unpleasant when he made advances on her.
It was also good to see George Takei as Sulu in this episode. Unfortunately Sulu has to suffer the effects of freezing cold temperature. He constantly makes contact with the Enterprise for their help.
There’s also a cute alien dog-like creature that appears in this episode. Unfortunately the dog-like creature gets duplicated in this episode. We both get a good and ferocious version of the same dog.
It was tense when a solution was found and the two Kirks had to go into the transporter to be put back together again. I wondered whether Kirk would die at the end of this, but thankfully he didn’t.
‘The Enemy Within’ is definitely one of my favourite episodes from the ‘Star Trek’ series. I can’t tell you how much I love this episode and I’m impressed by the performances of William Shatner in this one.
The DVD special features for this episode are as follows. On Disc 2 of both the original and re-mastered DVDs of ‘Star Trek: The Original Series – Season 1’, there is a preview trailer for this episode.
‘The Enemy Within’ (TOS) rating – 10/10
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