Friday, December 2, 2011

The Infinite Vulcan

** (2 stars out of 5)

Newly discovered planet full of botanical wonders. In Soviet planet Phylos, asparagus picks YOU!

Agmar, leader of the Phylosians, heals Sulu when the inscrutable helmsman is poisoned by a retlaw plant.

(I never noticed the little walking plants are 'Walter' backwards, after writer Walter Koenig. Nice one!)

"I am Dr. Stavos Keniclius 5," declares a giant man wearing a towel, arriving out of nowhere.

Let me see if I have this straight: this is the fifth clone of a scientist from the long ago Eugenics Wars who roamed space trying to find the perfect man from which to clone a master race which would impose peace on the galaxy. When he arrived on this planet, Keniclius (accidentally?) destroyed the previous generation of Phylosians with a plague of Earth germs, so the few surviving plant guys are frail and sterile. As a reward, the vegetables named him their saviour and bought into his cockamamie scheme completely. Much as we here on Earth venerate the people who cough on us at work and get us sick right before the weekend.

Why in the hell he's fifty feet tall is anybody's guess.

"Behold, gentlemen, the dawning of a new era, the salvation of the galaxy: Spock Two!"

Laying it on a little thick, Kenick? How will a giant Mr. Spock clone save the galaxy, exactly? Is there a phase two in which he bakes a giant pie?

Spock 2 has Spock's memories, but the original is dying in the lab.

As Kirk rightly says: "Spock's death is meaningless if it is only to create a giant version of himself."

The Federation has had mutually agreed peace for 100 years, Kirk claims. Therefore, these two giant men will just have to devote themselves to curing the Phylosians. And occasionally go dancing, one assumes.

How did Giant Spock get his Giant Clothes? Why is Keniclius 5 still in a skirt if he can make 25-foot-long trousers in a trice? Why is THAT the LEAST confusing thing about this FREAKY DAMN PLANET?

Sorry, I got carried away- BY THIS INSANE PURPLE TENDRIL DRAGON!?! Can you even design something like that without the help of acid?

"The Infinite Vulcan" is a weird, disconnected mess. I have much respect for actor Walter Koenig, but is this his fault as writer? He apparently did 10 or 12 drafts and Roddenberry grafted in the plant men, so to speak. I've got to give it credit for inventiveness: this really goes the distance in the 'strange new worlds' department.

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