Episode 52 – TOS 2×23: “The Omega Glory”

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remains of the other ship's doctor: a uniform and some crystals
You know it’s a bad week when “starship crew reduced to little piles of salt” is the high point of the episode.














Okay, here’s a partial list of acceptable scenarios under which you may portray generally Earth, or specifically the United States of America, as existing on an alien planet or anywhere that is not our universe:

  • alternate timelines
  • alternate universes
  • cultures that deliberately imitate Earth
  • cultures that have been plucked from Earth/America and plonked down on another planet and directed to develop that way
  • cultures that have been plucked from Earth/America and deliberately preserved, in situ, by omnipotent alien museum curators
  • alien training programs that mimic and live as humans for the purposes of infiltration/invasion

Scenarios where this just pisses us off:

  • alien planets thousands of light-years from Earth spontaneously developing parallel China and America, right down to the Stars & Stripes, the Christian Bible and the Declaration of Independence for the purposes of making a sloppy point about how The Cold War Is Bad And We Should Stop, with bonus White Indians, yes you read that right

Guess which one happens in this episode.

white men dressed up like Native Americans (and Ron Tracy being crazy)
What the ACTUAL FUCK, Gene Roddenberry.










The frustrating thing is that this episode contains at least three barely-connected episodes, and 1.75 of them could be good stories. Unfortunately, they’re made retroactively irrelevant by the general shittiness of the final, out-of-the-blue, America, Fuck Yeah! minutes of the episode, especially since the entire debacle could have been avoided by a refresher course on Biohazard Protocols (yes, we’re back here, again) and Keeping In Touch With Starfleet.

Cloud William saluting an American (???) flag
This makes me so? irrationally?? angry???










Mystifyingly, this was one of Gene Roddenberry’s submissions for the original pilot, but NBC – rightly – made him shelve it until late in the second season when, presumably, they could no longer stop him.

Possibly this episode would seem less wretched to an actual American, but we seriously doubt it.

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