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Mission Log #11: Episode 011- The Corbomite Maneuver

A scary looking alien gives the Enterprise a lot of grief, but Kirk has a way out. Going into the Mission Log, it’s “The Corbomite Maneuver”.

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  1. Cyborgmutant says:

    Gene Roddenberry made it very clear when talking about Star Trek that he thought that humanity could and would evolve to become better people and that humanity could improve itself. The alternate view is that human nature is unchanging and that a senator of ancient Rome transported to the 21st century, while being overwhelmed by our technology, would find nothing surprising in our organization, politics or the content of our political debates and might even end up running the place if given time to acclimate.

    The problem with Roddenberry’s view in the context of a TV show is that by the time of TNG the lack of interpersonal conflict or drama between the human crew lead to the aliens being the most interesting and three dimensional characters in the later series.

    Kirk in this episode may be one stage of Roddenberry’s evolved human. Yet another view is that Kirk, as Horatio Hornblower in space, was just following the rules of war that prevailed before the Germans mucked everything up with unrestricted submarine warfare.

    On the political questions, the idea of civilian trial for alien terrorists has never been the norm especially in time of war. Remember that FDR sent German terrorists to military tribunals and that terrorists have most often been treated as war criminals. The current U.S. policy seems to be summary execution, by drone, without trial.

    One thing that bugged me in this episode was Kirk saying something to the effect that any civilization capable of space travel would evolve to a certain level of civilized behavior. This is obviously pre-Klingon and pre-Romulan but I would think that Kirk would remember that in Earth’s history that the first states to place objects and people into space were also the ones responsible for the most war, death, destruction and rape in the least amount of time in our history.

  2. sdckapr says:

    During the podcast, the question of what happened to Bailey was asked. While not canon, there is a short story named “Ambassador at Large” by J.A. Rosales (in the collection “Star Trek: Strange New Worlds” edited by Dean Wesley Smith in which the Voyager crew runs into Bailey in the Delta Quadrant, who is still traveling with Balok.

  3. cdthomas says:

    Now, in your digression about ‘high-sounding words’, you’ve hit on why I despise the Abrams’ reboot: Cruelty, at its climax.

    Through the snarky destruction of the enemy, and all the steps toward that, we see that the destruction of Romulus, then Vulcan, isn’t the worst damage done — it’s the resulting Federation (and a Kirk) that thrives on jokes and pettiness. It’s a Captain Kirk that is awarded for his lack of seasoning and maturity, and a Federation that lacks that balance that was the basis of the other-universe Kirk’s nobler instincts. It’s a damage to ST’s fundamental premise — get over yourself, and explore the universe as if you’re not the center of it.

  4. Steve says:

    One of my favorite episodes. I love the ending but:

    1) Why do does Scotty ask the boarding party to hunch over and then transport them into a very confined space with no headroom? After transporting in, the boarding party simply walks 5 ft to their right, stands upright and proceeds to greet Balok with plenty of head clearance (Scotty’s having fun?)

    2) Anyone notice the leather holsters the boarding party dons to hold their phasers just before transporting out? I could be wrong, but I don’t recall those ever reappearing in later episodes.

    3) I’m sorry, but Bailey should have been fired after the second time he could not execute commands on the bridge. I don’t care how hard CAPT Kirk was on him (quit your whining McCoy).

  5. Peter says:

    That same aspect of himself kirk shows by living up to his ideals rather than taking the easier path is the same thing that I think makes superman a great hero.

    They are examples of power not corrupting and hopelessness or fear never winning over peace and love

  6. Admiral Kent says:

    I said in the comments for that episode podcast that ‘Miri’ used to scare the crap out of me as a kid…Clint Howard in this used to scare the crap out of me as a kid!