As I have said a few times on this blog, Star Trek: The Original Series is my personal favourite in the Star Trek line up. There are so many good episodes that it was hard for me to pick my favourites, but I finally managed to narrow it down to five.
without further ado, I present to you my top five favourite Star Trek: The Original Series episodes.
5. The Squire of Gothos
Starting off the list at number five is The Squire of Gothos. This episode is the cheesiest on this list, but I love it!
The crew meet an odd person named Trelane, the self-proclaimed Squire of Gothos. The episode is just the crew trying to deal with a man with who seems to have almost Godlike powers and the mentality of a child.
Trelane is such a fun character, it is a shame we don’t see him again but he was the inspiration for another Godlike character further down the line, Q.
The only downside of this episode is a couple of lines that could be taken the wrong way *cough* Tumblr *cough*. However, it works because of Sulu’s deadpan reaction to it and Trelane’s childlike behaviour shows that there wasn’t any malice behind it. SJWs, put down your pitchforks.
4. Shore Leave
Perhaps one of the most random episodes in the original series. Yet at the same time, it is a great character piece.
While scouting out a planet for shore leave, odd things start to happen. They soon discover that the planet brings their thoughts and desires to life.
This episode has some of the best banter between Spock and Kirk. From the back rub scene to Spock expertly manipulating Kirk into shore leave. Bones and Sulu also have some interesting character development.
In the animated series, there is a spinoff episode which is just as charming.
3. Let That Be Your Last Battlefield
Yes, this might be one of the most overrated episodes. I know, but it is still a fantastic episode nonetheless.
The story is about two aliens who look the same only with their colours mirrored. This small difference has created a race war that kills all but two of their people.
This is often the episode that gets namedropped when people talk about how Star Trek discussed race issues and how it was ahead of its time. Admittedly it is one of the better episodes of that nature, but for me, I see it as a cautionary tale of what stubbornness and pride can lead to in any conflict of interest whether it be race or just ideologies clashing.
The reason I love this episode is because of how it ends. There is no forced resolution or says “he is right, you are wrong”. In the end, their pride won’t allow them to co-exist, so they continue to fight even when the war is over.
2. Whom Gods Destroy
Shatner at his hammiest.
After beaming down to deliver new medical equipment to an insane asylum, they are captured by the inmates who have taken control of the facility. The leader of the inmates tries to get Kirk to join him.
The villain, Garth, shapeshifts into Kirk in an attempt to get onto the Enterprise, seize control of it and rage war. He fails and has a hissy fit which is hilarious to watch.
Yvonne Craig, of Batman fame, gives an amazing performance as Martha. I really wish we could have seen more of her, but I don’t know how they could have done that and I’m not just talking about what happens to her.
1. A Piece of the Action
My personal favourite episode.
Kirk, Spock and Bones are captured by aliens who have based their society off 1920’s gangsters. Hijinks ensue.
Kirk’s sly and manipulative side is on full display. Poor Spock can’t keep up! To be fair, he may be an excellent starship captain but as a taxi driver, he leaves much to be desired.
I am not quite sure why I love this episode so much, but this is the episode I keep rewatching over and over again. There is a charm to it I just can’t put my finger on. Maybe it is all the confused reactions from Spock and Scotty, the silly premise or the fact that Kirk forces two men to strip. I don’t know, but I love it so much.