Episode 49 – TOS 2×20: “Return to Tomorrow”

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So in case you were still on the fence about this, here is the lesson for this episode: never, ever, ever let a semi-ascended super-being, especially one who considers you a child or ant by comparison to themselves, inhabit your body, even temporarily.

kirk being posessed
Never trust anything that can think for itself if you can’t see where it keeps its brain.











Like, how are we even still having this conversation? HowHow has at least a year charting the vast reaches of unknown space not taught anyone on this ship even an iota of genre-savvy? I’ve known this since I learned to read. Anyone with a post on board the Enterprise is, by definition, much smarter than me, so how do they not know this? How does anyone in Starfleet not immediately go “oh, this is a terrible idea for about thirty-seven reasons to start with, no matter how scientifically fascinating it is?”

Spock, leaning
Spock’s tenant, when not doing impressions of Iago, mostly leans against things and smiles a REALLY unsettling smile.












Because that’s what happens in this episode: three apparently intelligent, sciencey adults consent (and oh, boy, are there ever some consent issues on the table here: Mulhall and Kirk’s tenants last about three seconds in their new bodies before commencing makeouts) to have the consciousnesses of three “dead” aliens from an extinct race “borrow” their bodies while they build themselves new android ones.

Thallassa and Henoch with her new android body
All the kudos the dude playing the android body. Yes, that is a genuine human man.











That this will immediately go horribly wrong should be a foregone conclusion, but Kirk sways the room with his famous “risk is our business!” speech, and apparently to Kirk, Spock, and Dr. Anne Mulhall (played by Diana Muldaur, who would later play Dr. Katherine Pulaski on Next Gen), this is just too cool an opportunity to pass up. Clearly we have different priorities. Fine.

I just remembered that once, an actual human physicist stuck his head into a particle accelerator just to see what would happen. And there wasn’t even the knowledge of the infinite at stake. Nothing should surprise me anymore.

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