Miscalibrated Internet Receptor Stalks

Many later Star Trek shows, particularly Enterprise and a certain episode of Deep Space Nine, have portrayed Vulcans as condescending pricks, but the original Star Trek series (TOS) showed Vulcans can be real jerks too.

“Amok Time” is an essential episode of TOS that not only introduces the pon-farr but also gives an example of Kirk placing Spock’s well-being ahead of his Starfleet duty. And of course it gave us this bit of music that you’ve probably heard snippets of even if you haven’t seen the episode. I highly recommend watching it if you haven’t. Since I’ll be discussing a major plot point this is your SPOILER WARNING for an episode of a 1960s TV show.

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At his marriage ceremony, Spock’s fiance T’Pring forces him to fight Kirk to the death. Her ulterior motive is that no matter who wins, they won’t want her afterwards so she’ll be free to be with her boytoy.

To put it extremely mildly, this is a jerk move. So in the first episode where we spend time with Vulcans other than Spock* we learn that Vulcans can be duplicitous when it’s logical and serves their interests.

*”Amok Time” takes place before “Journey to Babel” so at this point Kirk and McCoy (and the audience) don’t know who Spock’s parents are, only that Spock’s family is important because of the presence at the ceremony of a powerful Vulcan politician.

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