Star Trek. I haven’t watched it since the late 80s. It’s been Remastered. Now it’s being Re-viewed.
Star Trek Remastered. “The Changeling”
Not a whole lot for the gang at CBS Digital to do here, just a few shots of the Enterprise flying by and a new green energy bolt spit out by Nomad. Not bad, but nothing to write home about.
This episode has always been a favorite of mine. Nomad is a great concept as a character, and it boasts an equally great physical design, which they unfortunately cannibalized in future episodes. (Somehow I doubt Nomad checked off “organ donor” on his driver’s license.) They kept his blinking lights simple, something later Star Trek productions would throw out the window (ST-TNG’s tricorder by about season four or five had so many colored, blinking and strobing lights as to be completely ridiculous.
The late great Vic Perrin voiced Nomad, as well as several other TOS characters, including “Arena’s” Metron, and he appeared on camera in “Mirror, Mirror” as the leader of the Halkan council. Perrin is perhaps most famous as the Control Voice from the original “The Outer Limits” television series.
The episode starts with some great action – nothing like someone taking pot shots at the ship to begin the teaser. One thing that bugs me though, is that Spock states the energy from just one of Nomads lazer bolts or whatever they are is the equivalent of 90 of the Enterprise’s photon torpedoes. Spock also states they can get hit THREE MORE TIMES like that, then they turn to jelly after a fifth hit. So the Enterprise fires ONE photon torpedo, which Nomad absorbs. Kirk is completely flabbergasted, “How can something absorb THAT MUCH ENERGY?” he asks. Um…say, didn’t YOUR ship’s screens “absorb” the equivalent of 90 PHOTON TORPEDOES just a second ago? Where the frak were you? Minor quibble, but still.
Scotty, Scotty, Scotty. What is it with you getting between a powerful alien entity and chicks? Here you interrupt Nomad “waving his wand” over Uhura. What happens? You’re sent hurtling through the air like one of the Flying Wallendas. In “Who Mourns for Adonais” you get between Apollo and Lt. Pajamas* and are sent flying through the air crashing into the goat pen. In “Lights of Zetar” you feel up a Zatarain-possessed Myra Romaine and, guess what, you’re sent soaring through the air once again. How does Kirk insure this guy?
I think Kirk cheated and just looked at his Landru Computer Playbook for his little "let's talk about imperfections" chat with Nomad at the end.
And if they can completely re-educate a mind-wiped Uhura through college level in less than a week, what’s the deal with spending FOUR YEARS going to Starfleet Academy? You need that long in the future just to ensure you party hearty? And how did they break that bit of news to Uhura’s family? “Mr. and Mrs. Uhura, your daughter is fine, she’s safe, however, there’s just one thing. Her mind was COMPLETELY ERASED by an alien probe we encountered. We re-educated her of course. But she has NO memories of you, or any other member of her family, her old friends, her pet duck Quacky. Nothing. She’s a complete blank in those respects. Mrs. Uhura…Mrs. Uhura, please don’t cry…”