Friday, December 9, 2011

The Jihad

**** (4 stars out of 5)
Responding to a request from the Vedala, oldest spacefaring race known, Kirk and Spock are selected for an Impossible Mission Force. The other specialists are:

Prince Tchar of the Skorr, who looks a lot like the historian bird from 'Yesteryear'.

Sord. A lizard. Doesn't talk much.

Em/3/Green from a race of cowardly grubs. An expert lockpick and thief.

Lara the Hunter looks to be from the unruly-eyebrowed race of Zora from 'The Savage Curtain'.

The winged Skorr abandoned their vast armies at the religious teachings of Alar two centuries past. (Most things seem to happen 200 years ago in this series, have you noticed?) Someone has stolen the imprint of Alar's memories, known as the Soul of the Skorr. If they don't get it back, the Skorr are going to spend the next two years breeding an army of 200 billion warriors and take their loss out on the whole galaxy.

No park statue or freshly washed car will be safe!

The team begins tracking the missing sculpture on 'The Mad Planet' an unstable place similar to the Earth of 'Damnation Alley'. And they've got a 'Damnation Alley' RV.

Road Trip!

Leisurely armageddon driving, and finally briskly walking away from a lava flow leads them into a snow storm. Each team member gets to demonstrate their varied abilities.

Spock regards the Vedala not knowing something as an impossibility. (He places a lot of faith in a pink-jumpsuited weasel we've never heard of before today.)

Lara hits on Kirk. He turns her down with a delightful turn of phrase (in light of his taste for the women of Orion). "I already have a lot of green memories."


Turns out Tchar stole the soul himself to prompt his people to return to the warrior past. Think of it! "The Jihad" will bring eternal glory to hundreds of billions of Big Birds, dying in the dust of a million worlds. Try not to think of the potential windfall this would be to KFC...

Kirk and Spock call on their skill in null-gravity combat to defeat the misguided avian.

The Vedala apparently muck with time or memory or something: the galaxy at large will not recall this adventure. Sulu doesn't remember it, anyway, and that's what matters.

This mission doesn't deserve to be disavowed: it's an entertaining story that packs a lot of questing into a scant 20 minutes. It's an off-road vehicle full of fun.

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