The Enterprise arrives at Cestus III to visit Commodore Travers only to find that it is a trap. The colony has been destroyed.
In typical TOS Trek fashion the space battle and the chase through space takes place without showing even showing the alien vessel.
Kirk pushes his ship right to the edge. As Scotty says, "We'll either catch them or blow up."
Sensing that Kirk is looking for vengeance on the aliens, Spock questions if it is really necessary.
Spock: You mean to destroy the alien ship, Captain?This is a much more mature Spock than we saw in The Man Trap.
Kirk: Of course.
Spock: I thought perhaps the hot pursuit alone might be sufficient. Destruction might be unnecessary.
Kirk: Colony Cestus III has been obliterated, Mister Spock.
Spock: The destruction of the alien vessel will not help that colony, Jim.
Kirk: If the aliens go unpunished, they'll be back, attacking other Federation installations.
Spock: I merely suggested that a regard for sentient life...
Kirk: There's no time for that. It's a matter of policy. Out here, we're the only policemen around. And a crime has been committed. Do I make myself clear?
Spock: Very clear, Captain.
As the chase progresses the alien vessel suddenly drops out of warp and comes to a complete stop. As Kirk moves in for the kill the same thing happens to the Enterprise. They are powerless and being held in place from a nearby solar system when the viewscreen delivers a message from the Metrons.
"You are one of two crafts which have come into our space on a mission of violence. This is not permissible. Yet we have analysed you and have learned that your violent tendencies are inherent. So be it. We will control them. We will resolve your conflict in the way most suited to your limited mentalities."
When Kirk tries to interject they continue: "We have prepared a planet with a suitable atmosphere. You will be taken there, as will the Captain of the Gorn ship which you have been pursuing. There you will settle your dispute...you will not be permitted to communicate with your ship. You will each be totally alone...The place we have prepared for you contains sufficient elements for either of you to construct weapons lethal enough to destroy the other, which seems to be your intention. The winner of the contest will be permitted to go his way unharmed. The loser, along with his ship, shall be destroyed in the interests of peace. The contest will be one of ingenuity against ingenuity, brute strength against brute strength. The results will be final."
Kirk vanishes from the bridge only to appear on the surface of a planet to face
The Gorn is the reptilian captain of the alien ship. It very much represents the old school way of looking at reptiles--scarey, yes, but slow and clumsy. He's sort of how dinosaurs were envisioned to be pre-Jurassic Park, before we had an inkling that they might have been warm blooded.
|The Gorn has a swing and a miss x 2|
Vasquez Rocks. There's lots of cool looking rock formations there giving the landscape an alien feel.
Yet they still managed to put the Gorn on a dirt road.
As the Gorn slowly chases Kirk he was busy collecting this and that to make gunpowder and building a canon to fire at the Gorn.
Mythbusters. Watch it here. In it Mythbuster Grant Imahara plays Spock. In addition to his Mythbusters gig Grant is now playing Sulu in the fan produced Star Trek Continues. They are picking up right where the first series left off. Their first full episode comes out late this month. They have done an amazing job recreating the sets of the original show and could be making some cool stuff. It is worth checking out.
Kirk asks about the Gorn and says that they should try to talk and reach an agreement. The Metron continues, "There is hope for you. Perhaps in several thousand years, your people and mine shall meet to reach an agreement. You are still half savage, but there is hope. We will contact you when we are ready."
Kirk's fight with the Gorn has come back in this this hilarious commercial for a new Star Trek video game. In it William Shatner battles the Gorn again:
Wasn't that awesome?
There was no new music written for this episode. It's all tracked from other episodes, but it works very well.
Want to watch Arena? Yes, you do and you can. It is online here.
What Trek is up next? The Alternative Factor.