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Paramount Studios presents
Star Trek: The Original Series—Volume #38 (1969)

"Gonna crack my knuckles and jump for joy. I got a clean bill of health from Dr. McCoy."
- Adam (Charles Napier)

Review By: Jesse Shanks   
Published: January 04, 2002

Stars: William Shatner, Leonard Nimory, DeForest Kelley, Skip Homeier, Charles Napier, James Daly, Louise Sorel
Other Stars: James Doohan, George Takei, Nichelle Nichols, Walter Koenig, Majel Barrett
Director: Arthur Heineman, Murray Golden

MPAA Rating: Not Rated for (Nothing Objectionable)
Run Time: 01h:40m:00s
Release Date: November 27, 2001
UPC: 097366003844
Genre: television


Style
Grade
Substance
Grade
Image Transfer
Grade
Audio Transfer
Grade
Extras
Grade
B+ A-B+B+ C

DVD Review

To see all Star Trek: The Original Series reviews, click here.

"There are many who are uncomfortable with what we have created. It is almost a biological rebellion, a profound revulsion against the planned communities, the programming, the sterilized artfully balanced atmospheres. They hunger for Eden, where Spring comes." - Spock (Leonard Nimoy)

The Way to Eden
Stardate: 5832.3
Original Airdate: February 21, 1969
Directed by: David Alexander

The Enterprise picks up a group of futuristic hippies who have made off in a shuttle stolen from a starbase. This episode must have stuck in William Shatner's mind as it is similar in conception to the story that he wrote for the big screen Star Trek movie he directed, The Final Frontier. Here, a former scientist, Dr. Severin (Skip Homeier), has rebelled against the synthetic and mechanistic nature of society and is leading his band of followers in search of anti-technology utopia in which they can become "one with the primitives." One of the members of the group is the son of a prominent ambassador, so Kirk must handle them with kid gloves.

"Herbert, you are stiff." Adam

The episode is full of humorous and delightful scenes. When Kirk first encounters the group, they refer to him as Herbert in a most annoying way. Spock intercedes and shows that he has some understanding of their philosophy, the concept of "One." Kirk shows very little patience with the passive resistance techniques of the group and orders them to sickbay for checkups and tells Spock, "since you seem to understand these people," to see to their needs. Later, Kirk feels compelled to find out what "Herbert" represents and learns from Spock that it is "somewhat uncomplimentary." Herbert was a "minor official, notorious for his rigid and limited patterns of thought."

"There's a nasty little bug evolved in the last few years. Our asceptic, sterilized civilizations produced it" McCoy

In giving the group their physicals, McCoy finds that Severin is the carrier of a disease which requires that he must stay in the very enviroments that he abhors. Were Severin to actually encounter the "primitives" that he sought, he would spread the disease to them and kill them all. McCoy orders him isolated to prevent spread of the disease and this create havoc among his followers. While Severin is in isolation, the group begins to attempt to incite the crew to dsaffect and learn what they can about how the Enterprise operates. In an effort to appease the group, Spock promises to use the ship's computers to locate their "Eden."

"Oh ho! That's now. That's real now." - Adam

Another part of interest is the musical nature of this episode as Adam (Charles Napier) performs various ironic little songs that have a certain Sixties space-jam quality. Later, he invites Spock to join in a session with them. Spock agrees and brings his Vulcan guitar-like instrument to play with the group. He definitely rocks hard. The group use their songs to spread their message.

"There is nothing wrong in doing what you want." - Irina

One of them members fo the group is Irina Galliulin (Mary-Linda Rapelye), whom Chekhov had known at Starfleet Academy. She had been studying to become a scientist but abandoned the pursuit in favor of joining the movement. It is a really cute little sequence as Chekhov and the girl move through the corridors of the ship attacting attention from the ship's crew. Eventually, she uses Chekhov's attraction to gain information about navigating the ship. Each member of Severin's group uses their friendliness to "reach" different members of the crew.

This episode benefits with some impressive guest performances. Homeier later played Melakon in the Star Trek episode Patterns of Force and is a very recognizable face, with appearances in most of the popular television shows of the 1960s and 70s, as well as many B-Movies. The musician Adam is played by Charles Napier, who made his first credited appearance here, and has since appeared on television in countless roles and has had a long film career, usually playing hard-ass military types. He is known for many appearances in Jonathan Demme films including, among others, Married to the Mob, The Silence of the Lambs and Philadelphia. He has also appeared in The Blues Brothers, Rambo: First Blood Part II, Miami Blues, The Grifters and Austin Powers 2: The Spy Who Shagged Me.

Other guest star notes: Victor Brandt, who plays Tongo Rad here, played Watson in the episode Elaan of Troyius the previous year and recently had a continuing role providing the voice of Professor Emile Hamilton in the animated Superman series. Elizabeth Rogers also portrayed Lt. Palmer previously in the episode The Doomsday Machine and provided the voice of the Companion in Metamorphosis. Phyllis Douglas, who is credited as Girl #2 in The Way to Eden, had also appeared on Star Trek as Yeoman Mears in The Galileo Seven and made her film debut as Bonnie Blue Butler at age 2 in 1939's Gone with the Wind.

"I don't know why a young mind has to be an undisciplined one. They're troublemakers." Scotty

There is a certain Hair-ish quality to the whole thing that makes the whole thing just a fun little hippie artifact and gets three Enterprises, Herbert.





"Constantinople, Summer 1334. It marched through the streets, the sewers. It left the city by ox cart, by sea, to kill half of Europe; the rats, rustling and squealing in the night as they, too, died: The rats." - Flint (James Daly)

Requiem for Methuselah
Stardate: 5843.7
Original Air Date: February 14, 1969
Directed by: Murray Golden

The Enterprise is a plague ship with Rigelian fever having killed several crew members and threatening to kill everyone on board. Desperate to find Ryetalyn, the only possible cure for the disease, Kirk Spock and McCoy beam down to an apparently uninhabited planet. Beginning their probes, they encounter a robot who attempts to kill them, but is stopped by a man who appears. This man, Flint (James Daly), at first orders them to leave but relents when they talk of the plague deaths on the ship. He orders his robot to gather the minerals they need and invites them to visit his house while the processing takes place.

Once at his abode, Spock shows himself to be quite the Earth art history expert as he notes uncatalogued painting by Da Vinci that appear to be actual work of the great master. They also note that he has one of the rarest book collections in the galaxy including a Shakespear First Folio and a Gutenberg Bible. There is also a mention by Spock of a 20th Century artist "Reginald Pollack."It is difficult to determine if this is an "error" by Spock or the writer in meaning to refer to Jackson, or if it is an error at all. Spock's tricorder reading indicate that despite the authenticity of the various works found in Flint's collection, the materials seem to be of contemporary origin. Once McCoy locates a bottle of Flint's 100-year old Saurian Brandy and the trio share a drink, Spock even admits to experiencing the unaccustomed emotion of envy at Flint's collection.

Flint seems hospitable enough and soon introduces them to his ward, Reena, who lives there with him in his isolation. Kirk is immediately attracted to her and Flint seems to want them together in a social setting. Kirk is enraptured by Reena and dances with her while Spock plays a waltz found on a piano, written by Johannes Brahms. "In manuscript, in Brahm's own hand, which I recognize. It is totally unknown. Definitely the work of Brahms, and yet unknown," he notes. Things turn sour when McCoy reports that the Ryetalyn delivered by the robot is impure and unusable. Flint is surprised that such a mistake could be made and takes McCoy with him to properly process the mineral. Kirk is torn by his duty to obtain the Ryetalyn and his love for Rayna, each involving a battle with the mysterious Flint. At one point, Spock is even forced to remind his captain that he should show "less interest in the young lady."

The two guest stars in this episode represent two actors going in opposite directions. Daly, father of actress Tyne Daly, was making one of his last television series appearances after making dozens of them since 1948. He did later make some TV movies and other film appearances. Louise Sorel, as Reena, was early in a career that saw her appear on many of the popular TV series of the 60s and 70s and now she reigns as one of the grande dames of American soap operas.

This has always been a personal favorite episode. As a student of history, just the conception of a character like Flint is fascinating. The story here is one of the finest of the series, with crisp dialogue and an excellent mystery for the landing party to puzzle over. Kirk's deep, instant love for Reena seems a little overboard in the situation, but makes for a truly eternal triangle with his rival, Flint. The setting of Flint's house, with its mix of period and futuristic art, is positively Kubrickian.

Definitely, a three Enterprise episode.



Rating for Style: B+
Rating for Substance: A-

 

Image Transfer

 One
Aspect Ratio1.33:1 - Full Frame
Original Aspect Ratioyes
Anamorphicno


Image Transfer Review: Both episodes here are finely transferred, although I did note some film noise and damage. However, the detail and colors in both episodes are delightful and enhance their entertainment value. The colorful hippie costumes in Eden and the settings on Flint's planet in Requiem are excellently rendered. One of the best-looking pair of episodes in the series.

Image Transfer Grade: B+

 

Audio Transfer

 LanguageRemote Access
Dolby Digital
5.1
Englishno


Audio Transfer Review: It is enjoyable to listen in Dolby Digital 5.1 to the subtle sound design on these old shows. The music of the hippie group and Spock's musicianship in both episodes come across very nicely, making for one of the best aural experiences in Star Trek.

Audio Transfer Grade: B+

 

Disc Extras

Static menu
Scene Access with 14 cues and remote access
Subtitles/Captions in English with remote access
2 TV Spots/Teasers
Packaging: Amaray
1 Disc
1-Sided disc(s)
Layers: single

Extras Review: We get the usual slender information booklet and the original trailers. There isn't any more, Herbert.

Extras Grade: C

 

Final Comments

This is one of the best discs in the series because it features two unique and interesting episodes that are definitely two of the best of the third season of the series. The guest stars are unique, providing solid and colorful performances. The humor and irony of The Way to Eden and the formidable suspense and pathos of Requiem for Methuselah make for a broad range of entertaining storytelling. This one goes on the list of essential discs from The Original Series.

 


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