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Episode 82 – “Star Trek 3: The Search for Spock”

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So, here’s the thing about the second, third, and fourth Star Trek movies: they’re a trilogy. And Search for Spock plays true to form for most two-of-threes: lots of feelings on display and not a whole lot of plot.

But that’s okay! Search for Spock is one of the reasons I tend to disagree with the odd-versus-even Star Trek Movie Rule, because Star Trek 3, while not a very complicated story, is still pretty emotionally satisfying if you’re invested in the characters, and okay, we definitely are.

The Enterprise senior staff, minus Uhura, in badass leather jackets.
Did I mention this is the one where they all get badass leather jackets?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Basically, the Enterprise returns to Earth to the news that even on top of Spock’s recent, tragic death, everything is garbage: they’re denied permission to travel to Vulcan to attend Spock’s funeral, and Starfleet is retiring the Enterprise (which at this point is over 20 years old) and replacing it with a hot young thing named the Excelsior, a ship Scotty, who is a starship engineer in the 23rd century, thinks is too fancy and complicated and hates with all his being.

It’s hard to say which of these two things is more upsetting to Kirk: being denied the opportunity to grieve his best friend-slash-life-partner, or losing his best girl to the political machinations of a PR-conscious Starfleet, who would rather the Enterprise crew hang around to do damage control over the Genesis incident.

But no worries: here comes Sarek, Spock’s dad and Vulcan Ambassador to the Federation, to hand Kirk & Co. a new quest like a video game NPC: Spock, though his body died, would have transferred his consciousness to someone else given half the chance. Sarek wants it back, and he’s super-pissed at Kirk for leaving Spock’s body behind on Genesis. Sarek thought Spock would have hitched a ride with Kirk, who even Sarek knows was his son’s best friend in the galaxy, but it turns out that Spock hitched a ride with McCoy instead, leaving our favourite curmudgeon space doctor speaking in tongues and having hallucinations while he tries to deal with his passenger.

Leonard Nimoy in street clothes and glasses, standing next to Shatner in his polyester space leisure suit.
This one was directed by Nimoy. Here I assume he’s instructing on the appropriate level of manly weeping.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Kirk, being Kirk, takes one look at the facts and comes to the only logical conclusion: LET’S STEAL THE ENTERPRISE AND GO ROGUE.

In the end, after some frankly forgettable battles with random Klingons and the (tragic?) death of Kirk’s son David, Spock’s body – regenerated to health by his time on Genesis – and his katra (the Vulcan soul) are reunited, and Spock is saved. The crew is reunited, the day is saved, and all is well. I  mean… except for the mutiny charges that are no doubt awaiting them back on Earth.

The entire Enterprise senior staff, INCLUDING Uhura, all stand around Spock, smiling and crying, each touching him with at least one hand.
This is literally the happiest we’ve ever seen any of them. *sniff*

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Next time on NSMTNZ: Star Trek: The Voyage Home, AKA: The One with the Whales, AKA: The Best Star Trek Movie, Bar None. Are you excited?

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