Top 10 Star Trek Episodes

I recently heard of the habit of some websites of making top 10 lists of Star Trek: The Original Series episodes–the ones you have to watch. Seeing as I just finished re-watching my favorite episodes of Season One and Two, I thought now would be a good time to make a list of my own with the reasons why. In no particular order: Where No Man Has Gone Before This episode, the second pilot, made the list because it serves as a good prequel to the Original Series as a whole. It establishes a lot about the character of James T. Kirk, the type of man he is, how far he is willing to go, and begins exploring the relationship between him and Spock. The Corbomite Maneuver This episode made the list because it’s the first episode that really brings together the whole Enterprise crew in the way it remained through most of the first season. Kirk, Spock, McCoy, Scott, Sulu and Uhura are all in their normal positions, and Rand features minorly. The episode does much to demonstrate the effectiveness of the Enterprise crew working in concert, the relationship between the main characters, and like all good Star Trek episodes has a good morality lesson. Balance of Terror This episode made the list because it’s the introduction of the Romulan Star Empire. The episode expands upon the history of Earth, in a time between the 23rd and 20th centuries. Kirk’s tactical genius is expanded to almost superhuman proportions and the trust Starfleet command places in Kirk’s abilities is also demonstrated. The Menagerie (Parts I and II) This is technically two episodes but as the only real two-parter in the entire series it makes sense to count it as one. This episode made the list due to the exploration of the history of the Enterprise and the deepening of Spock’s character. A Taste of Armageddon This episode made the list for a couple reasons. It demonstrates the abilities of Kirk and Spock very well and provides a powerful morality tale with Kirk giving Anan some very simple advice on avoiding killing and avoiding war that I long to repeat to the politicians of today who are pro-war. Errand of Mercy The reason this episode made the list should be obvious: the introduction of the Klingons to the Star Trek mythos. It is also worth a mention that it largely focuses on Kirk and Spock as a team behind enemy lines, which really goes to show just how in accord they are as Captain and First Officer. The Organians are also a nice touch when it comes to resolution. Amok Time This is the first of two episodes I included that explore Spock’s character heavily. I firmly believe that Spock is just as important a character as Kirk and thus a balance has to be maintained between the deepening of Kirk and the deepening of Spock. The introduction of pon farr into the series introduces an interesting drawback to the Vulcan logic, and the relationship between McCoy, Spock and Kirk makes for an interesting interplay. It’s also the first episode I included that has both Sulu and Chekov in it. This Side of Paradise This is the second Spock episode and is a fun one because it’s the first time Spock is actually allowed to romance. It demonstrates perhaps most clearly James T. Kirk’s strength of will. The Trouble With Tribbles I chose this episode for two reasons. First, because I think it’s necessary to include at least one of the second season’s numerous incidents of the Klingon’s pushing the Organian Treaty to its limit. Second, because it once again has Chekov in it, and he’s a neat character. Third, because it’s a very enjoyable episode, most likely due to its lighter tone. The Doomsday Machine I included this episode because it’s probably my favorite of the second season. It demonstrates Kirk’s, Spock’s, McCoy’s, and Scott’s abilities very well indeed, it has drama and suspense, with the fate of the galaxy hanging in the balance. The only drawback is that Uhura and Chekov included in the cast of the this episode but from previous episodes helm and navigation positions rotate regularly and it’s not all that surprising that Uhura could be on a leave of absence, or something similar. That’s it from me. Feel free to disagree. 🙂

Published by Devin Hogg

My name is Devin Hogg. I was born and raised in Carnarvon, Ontario, Canada. I moved to Guelph, Ontario, Canada in 2009 for university and lived here ever since. In my free time, I enjoy reading, watching TV and movies, going on long walks, swimming, and practicing Chen style Tai Chi. I love to write poetry and blog regularly about topics such as mental health, sci-fi/fantasy series, faith, sexuality, and politics.

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