In the nineteenth episode of the third season ofÂ Star Trek, Spock, Bones, and Kirk search for an ingredient for an antidote thatâ€™ll save theÂ Enterprise on a planet thatâ€™s home to someone who has a few secrets theyâ€™d like to keep hidden. Intrigued? Then itâ€™s time for Mark to watchÂ Star Trek.Â
Trigger Warning: For consent.
I really wish the final actÂ of this episode was as good as everything that came before it.
It was unnerving watching this unfold. As youâ€™ll see if you download the video for this episode, IÂ knew there was something wrong. Thatâ€™s why I felt like this episode held such promise; without a central conflict beyond the search for Ryetalyn, weâ€™re left to wonder when the other shoe would drop. On top of that, there was an intriguing mystery to Flintâ€™s backstory. Why did he speak of the Bubonic plague as if he were there? Given the episodeâ€™s title, I figured he wasÂ really old, but then all of the undiscovered â€œnewâ€ works from great masters made no sense within that reality. Neither did Flintâ€™s contradictory behavior. He was clearly attracted to Rayna, but then repeatedly set her up to be courted by Kirk.
And then, he delays McCoyÂ constantly. I COULDNâ€™T FIGURE IT OUT AT ALL. Even accepting that Flint wasÂ extremely old, the pieces didnâ€™t fit together for me. Why let Kirk and Rayna dance? Why promise the Ryetalyn, only to constantly withhold it? Why lie about being the sole inhabitant of Holberg 917-G, only to reveal that SURPRISE, thereâ€™s someone else here?Â Why tell Rayna that her intellectual curiosity will always be satisfiedÂ and then refuse her entry into ONE DOOR?Â
Itâ€™s a hell of a mystery, and James Daly is great as the uber-creepy Flint. YouÂ never feel comfortable with him around, and it doesnâ€™t help that heâ€™s constantly surveilling Kirk and Spock. When M4 attacks Kirk in an alleged attempt to â€œprotectâ€ Rayna, itâ€™s clear that this isnâ€™t the truth. Oh god, I just realized that Flintâ€™s replacement of M4 in just a few minutes was a clue. IT WAS ALWAYS A CLUE OH MY GOD. I donâ€™t even necessarily have a problem with the general idea behind the conclusion. I was certainly shocked when theÂ Enterprise crew made it into the secret room and found various versions of Rayna. Itâ€™s not the first time the show has used androids as a plot point, but I wasnâ€™t bored by the reveal, nor did I think it was a bad idea.
But the execution of the romanceâ€¦ lord, yâ€™all. It is â€“ if I may be bold here â€“Â utterly boring. I know that Iâ€™ve expressed exhaustion with Captain Kirkâ€™s romantic exploits, and I donâ€™t regret that. The third season of this show heavily relies on this device, and I canâ€™t believe it anymore. I cannot accept that this man falls forÂ every woman he comes across. Even more ludicrous is the way in which â€œRequiem for Methuselahâ€ asks us to accept that both Rayna and Kirk fell in love with one another in like an hour. Infatuation? Lust? I could believe that (sort of). But this comes across as if theyâ€™re star-crossed lovers destined for the worldâ€™s greatest romance, and I couldnâ€™t stop thinking about the fact that this episode gave us a four hour timeline. This all happens inÂ less than four hours. Itâ€™s not love! ItÂ canâ€™t be!
Whatâ€™s even more galling is that this episode tries to explore Captain Kirkâ€™s loneliness in a parallel with Flint. I donâ€™t doubt that the job of Captain of a starship is a lonely affair. Flings or hook-ups donâ€™t provide the kind of companionship that some people require, so I can totally accept this premise.Â Just not in this episode. It makes no sense here because, again, Captain Kirk has known Rayna for two and a half hours. What was he going to do? Move to Holberg 917-G? Abandon his crew? How many times has Captain Kirk fallen deeply in love this season??? Itâ€™s a mess, yâ€™all, and then Spockâ€™s behavior at the end (which is perhaps one of the most emotional things weâ€™ve ever seen him do) is tainted by the fact that he erases Rayna from Kirkâ€™s mind WITHOUT GETTING CONSENT FROM HIM. No,Â nope, not at all great. NOPE.
But my god, I could probably look past most of this if Raynaâ€™s end is not one of the worst things this show has ever done. Rayna is overloaded and â€œdiesâ€ becauseÂ she loves too much. Sheâ€™s fridged to make Kirk and Flint feel bad about loving her, and itâ€™s just embarrassing to even think about this. What is the scientific basis for a machine overloading itself on human emotion? How exactly does that happen? Let me just remind yâ€™all that Rayna (and many variations of her) have interacted with a humanoid being for THOUSANDS OF YEARS and notÂ once have any of them ever developed an emotional reaction. Iâ€™m supposed to believe that after just ten minutes with Captain Kirk, Rayna is suddenly awoken? Well, first of all, that implies that Flint is one of the most boring people in the history of the universe. POOR HIM. But this idea that the universeâ€™s women revolve around Captain Kirk is nothing more than a poorly executed male power fantasy. Thereâ€™s no basis for it in reality, in science, or in the very fictional world these characters operate in. Again, if you force a storyline to exist in aÂ four-hour window of time, Iâ€™m going to analyze the story within that period. Even in an entirely fictional universe, no one falls deeply in love with someone in ten minutes. It doesnâ€™t happen.
Kirk can make out with half the universe, but he canâ€™t make out with Bones and Spock?Â yawn.Â
The video for â€œRequiem for Methuselahâ€ can be downloaded here for $0.99.
Mark Links Stuff
– Mark Does Stuff is now on Facebook! Feel free to Like the page, which I’m running myself, for updates and SILLINESS.
– If you would like to support this website and keep Mark Does Stuff running, I’ve put up a detailed post explaining how you can!
– Please check out the MarkDoesStuff.com. All Mark Watches videos for past shows/season are now archived there!
– My Master Schedule is updated for the near and distant future for most projects, so please check it often.Â My next Double Feature is now on the schedule! I will be watching Leverage.
– The 2015 Mark Does Stuff tour is being announced!!! Check my Tour Dates / Appearances page often to see if I’m coming to your city!