Tuesday, November 1, 2011

And The Children Shall Lead

* (1 star out of 5)
Well, I'm sorry, but tonight it's "And The Children Shall Lead" AKA The Awful One With The Orphans and That Lawyer Dressed as a Garbage Bag.

Star Trek Season Three: underfunded, unloved by the studio, and all but abandoned by Roddenberry, this season still managed to make some pretty good episodes that I like. This is not one of them.

Dreary planet Triacus, after today famous for the disturbing mass suicide by poison of its science team, leaves Enterprise looking after a merry band of children. The kids romp amid the blotchy corpses of their parents, eerily self-involved and disconnected. Like it was the 1990's but dressed brighter.

The grabby urchins take Nurse Chapel's computerized ice cream, but take no guff from any adults about facing up to the trauma they're not making an effort to endure.

Somethin' ain't right, and it's the creepy cult leader whose influence the children are under.

He's called Gorgon, the Friendly Angel, and he's a powerful energy being exerting mental influence. His minions shake their tiny fists, and provoke crippling fear in the adults. Only by rejecting him, taking away the strength of their childlike faith, is he defeated.

All of which is undercut every second Gorgon's onscreen by the undeniable fact that this ghostly apparition from a dead race of cruel despots who struck fear into the local star systems and passed into legend is a doughy, avuncular square sporting a green plastic full body curtain with dainty little leaves and flowers all over it. Take it from me, as a man-child who spends hour after hour Marvelling and DeeCeeing over superhero comics, I can't even picture a less intimidating villain.

And doesn't orphaned Tommy Starnes look just like orphaned Peter Kirk from season one? That's not a casting choice that serves repeat viewing well.

I can't muster all the disdain this episode really requires, so for more bile check out the review at The Agony Booth.

No comments:

Post a Comment