Lion of the Blogosphere

Star Trek TOS, Season 1: The Naked Time

The fourth episode to air, and the worst of the four in my opinion.

Space is like a McDonalds. Everything is supersized. In previous episodes, ESP powers become super ESP powers. In this episode, the crew becomes super drunk because of a disease.

In the beginning, Spock and some crewmen who we’ve never seen before, and will never see again because he later kills himself with a butter knife (the absurdity), beam down to a planet wearing hazmat suits that look like shower curtains, and apparently the hazmat suits don’t have zippers or anything, and the crewman never received any training about not taking off his glove and then sticking his hand inside his helmet to scratch his face.

In later episodes, we are told that Starfleet is the best of the best, but in this episode they are like the Keystone Kops. In addition to the hazmat suit incident, we have two super-drunk crewman (Sulu and Riley) walk off the bridge and abandon their posts, and none of the sober people on the bridge even notice.

Super drunk Riley is able to take over engineering by just walking in and telling everyone that Captain Kirk said they should all leave. And then lock himself in so good that no one can get in there. A lot of the show is wasted on this Riley guy who we’ve never seen before, and will only see again in one other episode.

Body count: of the first four episodes to air, in three of the episodes members of the crew died, and in the only episode where no member of the crew died, twenty people on another spaceship were killed. Yes, space is dangerous, why would anyone want to sign up to serve in Starfleet when they could stay on Earth and live off of the free stipend everyone gets, and where there are more women around.

Sulu without a shirt: We see Sulu without a shirt, and although lean and wiry, he’s really ripped for the 1960s. Some Star Trek fans got a kick out of the scene with shirtless Sulu brandishing a fencing foil. An iconic scene in a pointless episode.

Kirk with a ripped shirt: When McCoy needs to give Kirk his antidote shot, he grabs Kirk’s shirt and rips off the shoulder. But somehow, McCoy was able to administer the hypo shot to everyone else without damaging their clothing. And we are shown in other episodes that those shots are able to go right through clothing. So in three out of the first four episodes, Kirk has a scene with either a ripped shirt or completely shirtless.

Ridiculous blonde wigs: Nurse Christine Chapel is introduced for the first time, and she’s wearing this ridiculous blonde wig that looks several times stupider than Yeoman Rand’s blonde wig. The actress who played her, Majel Barrett, who was Gene Rodenberry’s mistress, looked better in the first pilot where she played Number One with normal looking non-wig dark brown hair. But she’s no beauty.

Being super drunk. Christine reveals her love for Spock. So maybe there was supposed to be a love triangle involving Spock, Uhura and Christine Chapel. And maybe Sulu also! How about this exchange:

SULU: I’ll protect you, fair maiden.
UHURA: Sorry, neither.

That’s funny, Uhura acknowledges being black and that she’s not a virgin! Did she lose it to Spock in the previous episode?

This is the first episode where we see Scotty! And the very first time when Scotty says “ I can’t change the laws of physics.” But he was wrong, the laws of physics were changed in this episode. After they “implode” the warp engines to break away from the planet (after super drunk Riley turned off the engines) the Enterprise travels “faster than is possible for normal space” and then the Enterprise travels back in time three days, a non sequitur ending that has nothing to do with the rest of the episode.

Also, Spock cries while he’s super drunk. Really too soon to show Spock crying, we don’t know enough about him after only three episodes (including the second pilot where he mostly screamed stuff and ran around with a huge phaser rifle) to be shocked that he’s crying. Maybe that’s what Vulcans do? I was more intrigued by him smiling while playing the harp in the Charlie X episode.

Written by Lion of the Blogosphere

August 4, 2018 at EST pm

Posted in Star Trek

19 Responses

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  1. I agree it was a poor episode, which makes it doubly puzzling that the basically redid this same episode for The Next Generation.

    Mike Street Station

    August 4, 2018 at EST pm

  2. “So maybe there was supposed to be a love triangle involving Spock, Uhura and Christine Chapel.”

    They did have a love triangle but not with Spock. It was with the show’s creator, Gene Dingleberry.

    destructure

    August 4, 2018 at EST pm

  3. Just read there’s gonna be a new Star Trek series w/Patrick Stewart.

    gothamette

    August 4, 2018 at EST pm

    • I assume it will be called, “Old Man Picard” as he yells at nurses at the Starfleet retirement home.

      Mike Street Station

      August 5, 2018 at EST am

      • I assume that that show will be about someone else, and Picard will appear on the viewscreen from time to time as a senior Admiral at Starfleet Command.

        Lion of the Blogosphere

        August 5, 2018 at EST am

      • Or perhaps “Old Woman” – as he prepares for his transition?

        gothamette

        August 5, 2018 at EST am

      • “Or perhaps “Old Woman” – as he prepares for his transition?”

        I could only hope they would be dumb enough to go for something like that.

        Mike Street Station

        August 5, 2018 at EST am

  4. You have to remember how shitty everybody’s TVs and reception were at the time. Probably a third of the people watching this stuff had snow in the picture. So huge wigs and overacting might not have televised as such.

    Saw a discussion recently where people where making fun of how political speeches in the 60s were so slow. Kennedy and LBJ often seem to be speaking like slow retards. It’s because half the people who are ever going to hear it will get it on crappy short and medium wave transmission radios, you dummies. They’re talking slowly on purpose.

    bobbybobbob

    August 4, 2018 at EST pm

    • “You have to remember how shitty everybody’s TVs and reception were at the time. Probably a third of the people watching this stuff had snow in the picture. So huge wigs and overacting might not have televised as such.”

      That’s a very good point.

      Lion of the Blogosphere

      August 4, 2018 at EST pm

      • It really is amazing how good TOS looks on Blu-Ray. Everyone was worried before the HD release of Star Trek: The Original Series that viewers would be able to see all the seams, so to speak. However, that’s not the case…Star Trek really holds up well for a fifty year old television series with a limited budget.

        Oswald Spengler

        August 5, 2018 at EST am

      • The Netflix version I’m watching is also the HD restored version, and I agree it’s amazing how good it looks compared to what it looked like on an old CRT television. One thing I’m not sure I like is that they added some new graphics, most of the out of ship shots and shots of planets from orbit have been improved, so you’re not seeing what the original viewers saw.

        Lion of the Blogosphere

        August 5, 2018 at EST am

    • Doesn’t speaking slowly also elevate the dramatic effect and give a sense of gravitas to the speaker? Nobody reads the Gettysburg address quickly.

      Curle

      August 5, 2018 at EST am

      • “One thing I’m not sure I like is that they added some new graphics, most of the out of ship shots and shots of planets from orbit have been improved, so you’re not seeing what the original viewers saw.”

        When you watch the TOS blu-rays, the discs’ menus give you the option of watching the series as it was originally aired, with the original, practical special effects or you can watch the series with updated, CGI special effects (which range from the acceptable in some episodes to excellent in other episodes).

        Oswald Spengler

        August 5, 2018 at EST pm

  5. When you think about it, the people in TOS are living in pure communism. I think Rodgenberry had some leftists tendencies and you can clearly see it in the series.

    Another good communism-promoting series is The Smurfs cartoon-series.

    tmmm

    August 5, 2018 at EST am

  6. Pointless trivia but Majel Barrett would go on to voice the computer in TNG and also played Deanna Troi’s mother.

    J. White

    August 5, 2018 at EST am

  7. This was one of my favourite episodes when my sister and i used to watch it as kids! Isn’t this the one where Sulu runs around with some rad sword?

    S.J., Esquire

    August 5, 2018 at EST am

  8. S-1, E-7 should be interesting.

    Curle

    August 5, 2018 at EST am


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