Star Trek - The Original Series, Vol. 23, Episodes 45 & 46: A Private Little War/ The Gamesters of Triskelion
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A Private Little War is a slightly improved remake of Friday's Child (Volume 16). In this episode, the overall tone is darker, the parallel to the Vietnam conflict is driven home more clearly, and the ending is more ambiguous--fitting, considering how the real Vietnam War ended. Booker Bradshaw is featured in his first of two appearances as Dr. M'Benga, a specialist in Vulcan medicine.
The Gamesters of Triskellion is one of the weakest episodes of the Original Series. Kirk, Uhura, and Chekov are zapped several light years from their original destination, dressed in kinky S&M obedience collars, and assigned drill thralls--essentially companion slaves (poor Chekov's drill thrall looks like a drag queen from the Jerry Springer show). Kirk once again gets the girl, and lectures the "advanced" race on the errors of their ways. This plotline has been examined--more effectively--in The Cage and Bread & Circuses. The saving grace of this episode is that Chekov and Uhura are at last given more to do that recite "Course plotted" of "Hailing Frequencies Open."
The sound and picture are up to the standards of the other issues of this series, but because of the weak writing, this DVD is recommended only to die-hard Star Trek fans.
A PRIVATE LITTLE WAR obviously attacks the Vietnam War issue that plagued the world at the time (the late 60's). This had been attempted to a lesser extent in the earlier episode FRIDAY'S CHILD. However A PRIVATE LITTLE WAR is far more successful at getting the message across. Kirk and McCoy arrive at a peaceful primitive planet which Kirk had visited years earlier. However upon their arrival they find the planet has been divided and they're using flintlocks. As it turns out the Klingons have been supplying villagers with weapons to kill tribesmen. One of these tribesmen is Tyree a good friend of Kirk's from years earlier. As Kirk tries to help he realizes that he is violating the prime directive. And in the end the peaceful Tyree even falls into the hatred and bloodshed when his manipulative wife Nona is murdered by villagers. This episode ends on a real down note. For it is extremely tragic what happens to this peaceful planet because of the Federation and Klingons. It really relates to the Vietnam war when you think about it. This episode is one of the more serious Star Trek outings however the Mugatu ape beast is somewhat cheesy looking and so this episode does have a few funny moments. There is a great lesson to be learned from A PRIVATE LITTLE WAR but it's never been a personal favourite of mine. It is a good episode though.
The other one here is the classic GAMESTERS OF TRISKELION. I am greatly suprised at the amount of negative reviews for this episode however. I always found this to be one of Star Trek's finest and a true classic.Read more ›
Hey! Hands off, she's mine!
"Private Little War" is probably the most controversial episode in the 2nd season seeing it takes the Vietnam War issue head-on.
While it may never be popular or even politically correct to criticise government, Star Trek has an impressive history of taking events from our day and put them in futuristic settings to make social commentaries that are far more perceptive than what one will find on the six o'clock news. This is is no exception. The question this episode begs to be answered is how far should a supposedly advanced nation become involved with a so-called lesser culture. Watch "A Private Little War" and see what happens.
In "The Gamesters of Triskelion" the timeless message of slavery is addressed as Kirk, Chekov and Uhura are captured and enslaved for the amusement of another so-called advanced race. Things really heat up when Kirk takes the ultimate gamble to save his crew!
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Star trek great series. Buy the complete set unless you are like me filling in a partial set.Published 2 months ago by Michael D Yust
No problem transaction of pro-packed item as described> 5 stars *****Published 11 months ago by jerry dempsey
There are many reasons why I find this particular volume very forgettable and missable; in fact, this volume falls into the "give this a miss" category and ranks among the worst... Read morePublished on November 21, 2006 by Frederick Baptist
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