Saturday, February 2, 2019

Journey to Babel

Episode: TOS Season 2 Episode 10
Air Date: November 17th, 1967

This episode is another that introduces first into the Star Trek lore. It introduces Spock's parents, ambassador Serek and Amanda. It also introduces the Andorian species. The Enterprise is tasked to transport ambassadors to Babel to vote on the admission of the Coridian system into the Federation.

In the introduction of Spock's father, we learn that there is a riff between them, and it seems one that lasts until Serek's death in TNG.

The conflict in the episode is in two areas. The first is a mysterious ship that is shadowing the Enterprise that is capable of warp 10. The other is with the contention between ambassador Serek and the Tellarite ambassador Gav. Ambassador Serek is confronted by Gav many times where Serek accuses the Gav that the Tellarites don't want the Coridians to be admitted to the Federation since it will mean the Tellarites won't be able to take advantage of the Coridians mining facilities anymore. It would be better for the Coridians to be part of the Federation.

Later, Gav is found dead, neck broken by a Vulcan mercy killing technique called Tal-Shaya. When Serek is confronted he suffers from a Vulcan version of a heart attack. Serek said that he had three before, first two on Vulcan just before leaving and one at the same time Gav was killed.

There is a surgery that will save Serek but it requires a lot of Vulcan blood. Spock finds a way that would increase his blood production so he could donate enough, but it risks liver failure. McCoy is left with a moral quandary, risk Spock's life for a chance to safe Serek or let Serek die.

Spock and Uhura discover that the ship following the Enterprise is in communication with someone on the Enterprise. Then an andorian attacks Kirk. Kirk wins but gets stabbed in the lower lung. This puts Spock in command which means he can't donate the blood. The andorian ambassador claims to have nothing to gain by attacking Kirk.

When Kirk wakes up he decides to pretend he is better to take back command with the intention of giving command to Scotty allowing Spock to give the blood. But Kirk decides to stay in command as the Enterprise is under attack. They trace the signal to the brig where the andorian is. After they stun the andorian his antennae falls off  and a transmitter is hidden in it.

Once it is clear that the Enterprise was going to lose the fight, Kirk decides to use it as bait. He turns off all power and waits until the ship is close and then disables it. Both the enemy ship and andorian assassin commit suicide to prevent capture. After the surgery, Spock mentions that the ship had an orion power signature.

"Not precisely, Doctor. On Vulcan the teddy bears are alive, and they have 6-inch fangs" - Spock

"There will be payment for your slander, Sarek." - Gav
"Threats are illogical. And payment is usually expensive." - Sarek

"Command requirements do not recognize personal privilege." - Spock

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