Star Trek – Dagger of the Mind

by Alan Rapp on June 8, 2017

in Television Reviews 

  • Title: Star Trek – Dagger of the Mind
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“I must now use an ancient Vulcan technique to probe into Van Gelder’s tortured mind.”

Star Trek - Dagger of the Mind TV review

This week’s Throwback Thursday post takes us boldly back to where no man had gone before. In “Dagger of the Mind” a relatively simple cargo drop-off at a penal colony on Tantalus V leads to the discovery of something sinister once the former head of the institute stows away aboard the Enterprise. Seeking answers, Kirk (William Shatner) and Dr. Helen Noel (Marianna Hill) beam to the surface to have a look around for themselves. There they discover the doctor in charge is using a neural neutralizer not only to calm the patients but also alter people’s memories which Dr. Adams (James Gregory) uses on Kirk in an attempt to control the captain by implanting memories of a fake tryst with Helen who is then put in danger. Kirk breaks free of the conditioning long enough to turn the tables on his tormentor who gets a deadly taste of his own medicine.

The First Season episode is memorable for several small moments including marking the very first appearance of the Vulcan Mind Meld as Spock searches for answers in the broken mind of scientist turned patient turned stowaway (Morgan Woodward). Noel would have made for an interesting recurring character, especially if some small vestage of Kirk’s temporary reprogramming remained, but sadly this is her only appearance on the show. This won’t be the last time the show spends time looking at how prisoners are treated in the future. In fact one such man, and his fellow exiles, will make a lasting impression on the entire crew later this season.

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