Thursday, May 28, 2015

Trek Thursday: Shore Leave

#22: Shore Leave

In case you forgot: The Enterprise unknowingly stumbles upon a planet-sized amusement park.

This is a prime example of TOS at its goofiest. (As if that image weren't enough of a hint, I guess.) How you feel about this episode is dependent largely upon how silly you can take your Trek. Stock footage, raids into the costuming department,'s not "Tribbles," but it's close. The idea of a whole race of people building a planet "just for funsies" is a fun one, too, and brings to mind Douglas Adams, Slartibartfast, and Magrathea. Maybe this is where he got the idea?

There's something deeply uncomfortable about watching McCoy flirt with Barrow, but I can't pinpoint what it is: the age difference, maybe? And maybe this means I'm not as deep into Trek lore as I should be, but why fire Grace Lee Whitney just to put another woman in as yeoman? If producers didn't want Kirk to have a main squeeze, why insist on keeping the glorified personal assistant character? Was yeoman just the rotating spot for "woman Roddenberry was eyeing that week"?

Unfortunately, with so much silliness, there is some irritation. Mostly Finnegan, a psychotic human-sized leprechaun that Kirk remembers from academy. The fight scenes with him are endless and annoying.

Besides that, the amusement park groundskeepers (for lack of better term) have the equipment necessary to read minds and reproduce images contained therein, but it takes them a whole episode to figure out that the Enterprise crew is really baffled by what's going on?

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