Star Trek “And the Children Shall Lead...” (part 4 of 5)
Over in Kirk’s quarters, the Big Three watch more footage of Pinky McJumpsuit exhibiting all kinds of histrionics. This log entry is about how he once contacted Starfleet for a ship to be sent to Troyaikman. When Starfleet asked him why he wanted a ship in the first place, he didn’t know, which clued him in that “my mind was being directed!” Oddly, he must have decided not to share this realization with Starfleet.
Then we see his mouth gaping open wide as he screams, “God forgive us! Must destroy ourselves! Alien among us! The enemy from within!” Damn, what’s this guy on? He went from “somewhat apprehensive” to “Oops I Crapped My Pants” in about two-tenths of a second.
Spock says that except for some “scenes of family life” which will become important later, that’s the entirety of the record. Then the three men take turns making pointless, barely coherent philosophical statements that only serve to give Spock the opportunity to say, “Evil does seek to maintain power by suppressing the truth.” Dr. McCoy adds, “Or by misleading the innocent!”
A light bulb goes off over Kirk’s head. He repeats the phrase, and McCoy asks, “Do you mean the… children might be involved?” How would he know? You’re the one who said “misleading the innocent” in the first place.
Kirk asks Spock about the race that once inhabited Troyaikman. Spock describes them as a “band of marauders” who “made constant war” in a star system called “Epsilon Indy”. He says that “the destroyers… were themselves destroyed by those they preyed upon!” How ironic! Of course, this totally contradicts Prof. Starnes’ earlier log entry where he said Troyaikman’s civilization was destroyed by a “natural catastrophe”. According to Spock, however, there’s some sort of legend that “Evil is waiting a catalyst” that will again send it “marauding across the galaxy.”
Kirk asks Spock if it’s possible that Evil found that catalyst, but Spock says it’s just a legend. Kirk says, “But most legends have their basis in fact, Spock!” Yeah, just look at that “in the butt, Bob” story. McCoy sees where Kirk’s going with this, saying he must mean that Evil has found its catalyst in the children. (Personally, though, what I’d really like to know is where Evil found a flowered muumuu.)
Dr. McCoy warns Kirk that he could be “treading dangerously” unless the kids’ “normal grief is tapped and released”. What, like a keg? Kirk says the ship must come first, even ahead of the children’s safety. He abruptly excuses Dr. McCoy, who looks slightly burned as he leaves.
Spock and Kirk go over all the stuff we just saw Prof. Starnes say in his log two minutes ago, just so that Spock can remind us that Starnes “cancelled his request for a ship.” “Yes,” Kirk says, “A ship!” Okay, this is the second time an offhand comment has caused a Light Bulb Moment for Kirk in one conversation. Stupid, sloppy writing.
Kirk gets on the intercom to security, telling them to beam two men down to relieve the security detail on Troyaikman. He says he’ll have some questions for the two men that are beamed back up, which someway or another will reveal to him whether or not Starnes’ “enemy within” is on the planet or now on the Enterprise. Either that, or he’s about to see the two guys get Redshirt-ized. Place your bets now.
Spock and Kirk head to the transporter room and Kirk briefs the two Redshirts. He has them beamed down, then tells the transporter operator to beam the other two guys up. Just like that, huh? Wouldn’t he want to get in touch with those guys first, you know, to actually tell them they’re about to be beamed up? Those guys could be doing anything. I mean, they could be sitting on the crapper right now for all Kirk knows. Or perhaps tenderizing the tube steak.
Anyway, the guy at the transporter flips some switches, lights flicker on and off, but no men appear. Spock takes over for the transporter operator, because I guess the guy’s totally incompetent or something. Amusingly, Spock actually grabs the guy by the arm and half-shoves him away from the controls. Gee, looks like somebody hasn’t gotten any pon farr lately.
Spock pushes random buttons, but reports that he can’t lock onto the Redshirts’ coordinates either. Because—get ready for this—”It appears we are no longer orbiting Troyaikman.” Dunh-dunh-dunh! Kirk looks distraught, realizing this means they just beamed two Redshirts into empty space. Spock goes to a viewscreen and switches it on, and sure enough, the ship is in empty space. Hey, here’s an idea. Why not design a viewscreen that’s always on? That might be a handy little feature for times like these.
Kirk immediately contacts the bridge, but Sulu switches on his orange vinyl collector’s LP and assures the captain that they’re still orbiting Troyaikman, and that he can still see the planet on the viewscreen. Behind him, we see that the whole group of kids has gathered on the bridge. An outraged Kirk yells back that Sulu’s “off course” and says he’s coming up immediately.
Then we cut to the kids circling around, with their hands locked together once again. They do their little “Friendly Angel” chant on the bridge as a very charmed Uhura happily looks on. Kirk and Spock hop out of the turbolift just in time to see the green glowing version of Jon Voight materialize.
Jon Voight tells the kids that they’ve reached “a moment of crisis” because “the enemy have discovered our operation!” Um, that’s only because you materialized right in front of them, stupid. But they’re “too late. They no longer control the ship. We do!”
He tells the kids that if anyone resists, “call upon their beasts. Their beasts will serve us well! The fear in each one of them is the beast which will consume him!” He reminds the kids that they must get to Marcus XII, then says that if they need him, just call. You’ve got my cell, txt msg me, peace out.
Tommy orders all the kids except Mary to “go to your stations.” And by “stations” I guess he means the various corners of the ship where they stand and jerk off. They file off the bridge as Kirk walks over to Tommy and puffs up his chest. Kirk then tells Sulu to ignore what he sees on the viewscreen and plot a course for Starbase 4. Before he can do this, however, we zoom in on Tommy jacking off again. It’s a really lousy optical zoom (the camera doesn’t move, the frame is simply enlarged) accompanied by an obnoxious blaring musical cue. Yes, this is bad. We got it.
Sulu’s eyes bug out. We cut to his POV of the viewscreen, and it appears to him that the Enterprise is flying through circle after circle of gargantuan swords and carving knives. Sulu is terrified, and yet he doesn’t tell anybody about this and just calmly acknowledges Kirk’s order. Gee, you’d think that being encircled by collector’s knives is something the navigator of a ship might want to share with the captain. I mean, how hard would it be to say, “Hey, sir, remember those Ginsu ads? Well, we’re in one!”
Kirk tells Uhura to get on the horn to Starfleet and let them know he suspects the children of being “alien in nature” (huh?) and that he’ll want to launch an investigation as soon as they get to Starbase 4. Uhura turns to her control panel and abruptly has a mirror in front of her [!] that clearly wasn’t there in any previous shots. So, instantly we know there’s about to be a reason for it being there.
Sure enough, Tommy jacks off, there’s another lousy optical zoom, and Uhura suddenly sees herself as an old mutant woman in the mirror. Kirk sees Uhura freaking out and asks what’s wrong. She cries out, “I see my death… A long death!” Kirk literally tries to shake some sense into her, but it doesn’t work, so he orders Spock to make the call to Starfleet instead. Geez, does Spock know how to do everything? First the transporter, now this? I mean, why even have other crew members?
Kirk then sees that Sulu hasn’t laid in a course for Starbase 4 yet. Kirk reaches for the navigation controls, but Sulu pushes him away, screaming that if he touches them the ship will be destroyed. Kirk grabs him hard by the face and forces him to look at the viewscreen, yelling that there’s nothing there.
Suddenly, Spock calmly says, “Captain, why are we bothering Starfleet?” Yeah, I mean, it’s late, they’re probably in bed with their wives. Surely they must have better things to do. Kirk gets an “et tu, Spock?” look on his face. He yells at Spock to contact Starfleet, but Spock insists the bridge is under “complete control. There is no need.”
Kirk tells him to “Take a look around you.” Spock glances around, and I guess he sees things aren’t in control, because he calmly reaches for a button. Unfortunately, MasTurbo Power stops him before he can push it. His fingers tremble as Nimoy pretends a force is pushing his hand back. Finally, he tells Kirk that he can’t obey his order.
Kirk sees Sulu is still having a panic attack, so he goes to a security guard and asks him to take Sulu to his quarters. A little five-finger shuffle from Tommy, however, and the Redshirt only hears Kirk speaking in tongues. Of course, the security guard could simply say, “I can’t understand you, sir.” But instead, he just stands there, blankly staring at Kirk as he continues to speak in gibberish. Boy, this is one Redshirt who must really be worried about keeping his job.
We then see Tommy pump his fist again to, uh, I guess to keep the gibberish effect going. I think Spock is hearing the gibberish too, because we get a close-up of him putting his hand on his face. Either that, or he’s trying to mindmeld with himself. Eww, save the telepathic version of doing the Hand Solo for your own time, Spock.
Anyway, Spock eventually squeezes his eyes shut, shakes his head, and hears Kirk speaking normally again. So I guess we just witnessed Spock getting rid of his beast of burden. He walked a mile, and his feet are hurtin’. Meanwhile, Kirk turns to Tommy, who smugly crosses his arms. Kirk attempts to walk over in his direction, but gets stopped in his tracks by Jerk Off Power.
Ah, Shatner. Secretly, you have to admire any actor who can so shamelessly ham it up with this much reckless abandon. Kirk hunches his shoulders forward, clasps his hands together, and gets a look on his face like all he wants is his mommy. He totally sounds like a scared rabbit as he whines about not being in command, and when Spock walks over, Kirk practically jumps several inches into the air. Oh, so you just now realized how freaky he looks? Spock says they must get off the bridge immediately, while Kirk continues to moan that he’s “losing my ability to command!”
Spock finally grabs him by the arm and pulls him into the turbolift. Strangely, the turbolift immediately starts moving, even though neither of them told the computer where they were going or even pushed a button. Kirk is still whining and moaning about losing command as he dry-humps the walls. He then chews those walls up as he screams and cries and flails about and moans about being “alone”.
There’s no denying it: This is 100% grade-A pure Shatner here. We have now reached ShatNervana. The Shat goes through his entire range of grotesque, buffoonish facial expressions until Spock finally moves towards him, prompting Kirk to wildly grab him by the throat. The men have their faces just inches from each other as they inspire writers of slash fanfic for years to come. After a few seconds, Kirk visibly relaxes, and takes on a calm demeanor. Soon, he’s firmly convinced of the fact that he’s still in command of the Enterprise.
The two men exit the turbolift and Spock asks where they’re headed now. A newly emboldened Kirk replies, “Auxiliary Control, my Vulcan friend!” From what I saw, the two of you are more than just friends now.