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Star Trek - The Original Series, Vol. 12, Episodes 23 & 24: A Taste of Armageddon/ Space Seed

4.8 out of 5 stars 28 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

"A Taste of Armageddon," Ep. 23 - The U.S.S. Enterprise is caught in a bizarre interplanetary war fought entirely by computers, but with real deaths. "Space Seed," Ep. 24 - The U.S.S. Enterprise is commandeered by a 20th century genetic "superhuman," Khan (Ricardo Montalban), who along with his followers has survived for centuries aboard a "sleeper ship." This episode inspired the film "Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan."

Volume 12 in the classic Star Trek series on DVD begins with "Space Seed," which introduced Khan Noonien Singh (a viperlike Ricardo Montalban) to Trek lore. The trouble begins when Kirk & crew discovers a derelict ship and its crew of 70 supermen aboard, all in suspended animation. Led by Khan, these strange people turn out to be the product of genetic experimentation in the 1990s and instigators of a so-called Eugenics War, i.e., the Third World War on Earth often mentioned on various Trek programs. Though displaced from his more violent time and place, Khan quickly overcomes his disorientation and shifts into conqueror mode, quickly overtaking the Enterprise with the aid of a comely Federation historian who is swooning at his feet. As any Trek fan knows, "Space Seed" inspired Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan, regarded by many as the best of the Trek feature films.

"A Taste of Armageddon" is one of classic Trek's occasional, obvious metaphors for the absurdity of the then-cold war between East and West. Gene Lyons stars as a Federation ambassador named Fox, who boards the Enterprise to reach the planet Eminiar VII, where he hopes to negotiate a peace treaty with the inhabitants. Instead the crew of the Enterprise gets caught in the middle of an interplanetary war between Eminiar and neighboring planet Vendikar. The twist is that the war is being fought on computers, and compliant residents of those "destroyed" areas obediently report to disintegration chambers, where their "virtual" death is made literal. When the Enterprise is "hit" in one of these simulations, both the warlords of Eminiar VII and Ambassador Fox fully expect Capt. Kirk & crew to report to the disintegration center. The feisty Kirk has other plans, of course. And while the madness of this controlled armageddon makes a suitably surreal satire of the arms race in the 1960s, the story also evoked the endless, daily reports of body counts during the Vietnam war, with no resolution in sight. Aside from its parable aspect, however, the episode gave Kirk one of his earliest and most compelling scenes of Kirkian preachiness in a bold monologue about peace, reportedly written and rewritten numerous times by series producer and indispensable creative hand, Gene L. Coon. --Tom Keogh

Special Features

  • Volume 12 Contains 2 Episodes: Episode #23 A Taste Of Armageddon & Episode #24 Space Seed
  • Digitally Enhanced and Remastered
  • Special Added Bonus: Original Broadcast Preview Trailers

Product Details

  • Format: Closed-captioned, Color, Dolby, NTSC
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 5.1)
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: Paramount Home Video
  • DVD Release Date: May 23, 2000
  • Run Time: 100 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (28 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00004SPYM
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #166,937 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD
One of the real treats about Parmount releasing two episodes of Star Trek per DVD is that the entire series was so good you're guaranteed of at least getting one good episode. But on rare occasion, the unthinkable happens--you get not only two good episodes, but two GREAT episodes on one offering. Such is the case with this Trek DVD.
Both episodes are classics and they both look stunning being remastered.
Of course, Space Seed is probably the most famous episode on the set, namely because it features the first appearance of Khan. The episode itself is what classic Trek is all about--suspense, drama, great characters, well-written dialogue and some nice action. Ricardo Montelban delivers a great performance as the arrogant, superman Khan and Shanter plays off him point for point. And, of course, this episode features one of the all-time great Star Trek bloopers of all time (watch DeForest Kelly's reaction very closely when Khan is first coming out of stasis and Shanter knocks his prop off his belt). Space Seed is simply marvelous--one of the top ten episodes of all time.
Ranking right up there with it is the superb and underrated A Taste of Armageddon. Kirk and company are sent to make contact with a society that fights their war by computers with "casualties" being tallied and herded into disentegration chambers. No sooner have Kirk and Spock beamed down then the Enterprise is declared a war casualty, a set of events that does not agree with Kirk. Kirk must then spend the rest of the episode upping the stakes to save his ship and to stop the war. (Prime directive you ask? We don't need to steeenkin' prime directive!) It's an episode that features the theme of Kirk vs.
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Format: DVD
You may be asking . . . "Why buy this DVD?" Well, it is much more than classic television at its finest digitally remastered and enhanced best. If you have gotten this far, you obviously already know the storyline . . . This ENTIRE DVD series is outstanding in its production for DVD. When you watch this DVD for the first time, it will be like viewing these episodes for the first time ever! The image clarity and brightness is far superior to any previous version or broadcast of either episode. The colors are rich and the sound has been remastered in Dolby Digital for 5.1 Surround sound for all audiophiles! It includes added bonus footage of the weekly original broadcast preview trailers and fully interactive menus for scene or feature selection. Each disc includes liner notes with trivia for each represented episode, giving original air dates,etc. In special features, you should note that the episodic trailers have NOT been remastered. Each episode has the option of English Subtitles for the hearing impaired (they of course can be turned on or off). I HIGHLY recommend this ENTIRE series. Order each volume in this collection--it will be a lifetime treasure! By the way . . . this volume, AND volume 10 & 11 of this series are increasingly difficult to find in stores, so order your copy of on right NOW! You won't be sorry!
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Format: DVD
Politics gone wrong is the theme behind these two early Trek winners.
"A Taste of Armageddon" is what Captain Kirk and his landing party get on Ameniar 7, a planet that theoretically has been at war with one of its neighbors for centuries. But Kirk and his party find nothing wrong on the planet - no ruins, no signs of violence, no injuries or bodies. Bureaucrat David Opatoshu sadly informs the landing party that they and their ship were blown up in orbit - and since Kirk and the others are obviously quite well, and a quick call on their communicators confirms that, yes, the Enterprise is, too, the mystery deepens. Opatoshu explains that, in order to avoid the bloodshed of real war, Ameniar and its enemies long ago decided to fight their wars by computers. Those areas listed as casualties are obliged to report their populations to disintegrator booths, for neat disposal. Now, if the Captain and his crew will merely oblige, by walking into the disposal ovens...
A solid script, and a chilling premise. Opatoshu is a squirrelly and cagey bureaucrat, the charming Barbara Babcock a credible tender trap, and Gene Lyons really shines as a humorless by-the-book Starfleet diplomat who nearly gets the Enterprise destroyed by his own lack of common sense.
"Space Seed" was the forerunner story to the second movie in the later film series, "The Wrath of Khan." The Enterprise encounters a centuries-old derelict in space, with the cryptic enough name of "Botany Bay." It contains several dozen cryogenically frozen perfect human specimens, the leader of whom, Khan, is awakened for questioning.
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Format: DVD
Volume 12 of the Star Trek Original Series DVD collection has two classics. However this DVD is highlighted by the introduction of the space tyrant Khan Noonien Singh into the Star Trek world. Khan became one of Trek's greatest villians and returned in the 1982 Star Trek film THE WRATH OF KHAN. Because of his appearance on this DVD it tends to over shadow the other episode.
By the other episode I mean A TASTE OF ARMAGEDDON. This episode is a classic in it's own right. The story finds Kirk and the crew dealing with Ambassador Red Fox(who seems to be a real jerk) who demands to beam down to the planet Eminiar VII despite the planet warnigs to stay away. Upon their arrival at the planet it is revealed that the planet has been at war for 500 years with a neighboring planet named Vendikar. Although the planet says it has been at war the crew are puzzled for their are no real signs of destruction the planet is prosperous and peaceful looking. That is until the council members reveal how they fight the war. They use computers no destruction or devestation casualities are recorded and sent to an antimatter chamber and vaporized. In other words the war is pointless and to make matter worse the crew has been recorded as casualities and are demanded to enter a discintgration chamber at once. When Kirk refuses they are taken prisoner. This episode plot is quite fascinating and this is actually one of the Trek series better tales.
The second episode here is the one that sells this DVD. THE SPACE SEED is the notorious episode that introduces Khan to the Trek lore. Kirk and the crew discover an old 20th century ship in the vast depths of space and investigate.
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