Star Trek - The Original Series, Vol. 16, Episodes 31 & 32: Metamorphosis/ Friday's Child
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Captain Kirk (William Shatner), Mr. Spock (Leonard Nimoy), and Dr.McCoy (DeForest Kelley) accompany a Federation ambassador (Elinor Donahue of Father Knows Best) aboard a shuttle bound for a rendezvous with the Enterprise. The ambassador, Commissioner Nancy Hedford, needs to be treated for possible contact with an alien disease, and she haughtily insists her escorts get through this interruption in her work as quickly as possible. But a vaporous, translucent life form called "the Companion" has other ideas, traveling across space in search of humans who can ease the loneliness of a pilot (Glenn Corbett) marooned on a barren planet for more than a century. Kirk, however, offers the stranded man an alternative: a return to civilization. Whether he wants it or not is another matter--he and the Companion share an extraordinary intimacy of the mind and heart. A kind of chamber drama largely set in a single locale, "Metamorphosis" was written by series producer Gene L. Coon and directed by frequent Trek helmsman Ralph Senensky. Guest stars Corbett and Donahue are a bit monotonous in their performances, a little under par for a guest shot on the series. But Coon's story compensates with another fascinating application of one of his pet themes: empathy shared between different species. Kirk and Spock's knowing looks, as they begin to understand the Companion's true feelings for her captive man, alone make this episode worth watching. (Trivia note: An earlier incarnation of Corbett's character, warp-drive inventor Zefram Cochrane, was played by James Cromwell in Star Trek: First Contact.) --Tom Keogh
Our favorite Starfleet trio, Captain Kirk (William Shatner), Mr. Spock (Leonard Nimoy), and Dr. McCoy (DeForest Kelley) beam down to Capella IV to convince the resident warrior race to sign up with the Federation. Unfortunately, a Klingon agent named Kras (Tige Andrews) has preceded them and set enough doubt into play that the take-no-prisoners Capellans decide to give Kirk and company a hostile reception. Written by story editor D.C. (Dorothy) Fontana, "Friday's Child" has the broad outlines of a Western, with the good guys getting rebuffed by hostile Indians and a final showdown with crude weapons set up in the barren hills. Julie Newmar's guest role as Eleen, wife of a former ruler and a pawn in the barbed politics between Kirk, Kras, and the Capellans, even has something of the frightened native princess about it. Viewers hoping to catch Newmar in a Capellan catsuit, however (an extension of her iconic, sleek presence as Catwoman in the old Batman television series), will be sorely disappointed: Eleen is quite pregnant, fit to burst, and placed in McCoy's capable hands. Trek stalwart Joseph Pevney directed this action-adventure piece, which contains one of the good doctor's most memorable utterances, spoken when Eleen expects McCoy to carry her up a steep hill: "I'm a doctor, not an escalator!" --Tom Keogh
Top Customer Reviews
"Friday's Child" is a standard issue action-adventure story, dealing with a struggle with the Klingon's for a tactically important world. Reasonably well written and acted, it will provide 50 minutes of entertainment, but after watching "Metamorphosis" it serves as something of an anticlimax.
Paramount has done their usual fine job restoring the visual and sonic elements. The print quality on the second season episodes seems, so far, to be marginally superior than those from the first season. This is particularly true of optical shots of the Enterprise.
Not only do we get the great Cochrane here whose story goes on and is brought up again in the TNG movie about the Borg but we also get a very touching example of totally giving, unconditional love that is a real tear-jerker. Like the "Chronicles of Narnia" and "The Lord of the Rings", the analogy of the theme to unconditional love and self-sacrifice is as clear as day here.
The acting is also superb and this episode is consistently good from beginning to end; I struggle to find any fault with this episode as compared to any of the others. Just a briliant episode! This episode alone makes this volume a must have.
"Friday's Child" is also a very good episode as our heroes meet the Klingons again and the action takes place both on the planet below as well as in space making this among the best action classic Trek episodes ever. Again the acting here is first class and the theme of self-giving for the sake of others is present here in the selfless deed of the "tier" at the end.
If you decide you only want to get one volume of this entire series, let it be this one which represents the best of classic Trek.
As the wife of Capella's leader, Eleen, we can watch the former Catwoman Julie Newmar, another curiosity:this is the only episode in which Dr. McCoy uses his skills to deliver a baby.
METAMORPHOSIS is one of Trek's better love tales. Kirk, Spock, and McCoy accompany an ill Assistant Federation Commissioner Nancy Hedford on the Galileo shuttle to the Enterprise. However the shuttle is pulled off course by a mysterious cloud entity and sent safely to the planet Gamma Carnaris N. There Kirk and his party meet Zephram Cochrane, the man whom discovered warp drive 100 years before. He appears young and vital and Cochrane explains that the cloud like entity called 'the companion' has kept him young all these years. However when the crew tries to leave with Cochrane the companion refuses to allow them to leave. Kirk discovers that the companion has a female personality and after realizing that Cochrane has fallen in love with Nancy Hedford it decides to bond with the Assistant Commissioner to save her life from the deadly Sakuro's disease she suffers from. This is truly one of Trek's most touching stories. Simply wonderful.
The other episode features Julie Newmar as a guest star in FRIDAY'S CHILD. This episode definetly has more action than the previous episode on this DVD but it doesn't necessarily make it a better episode. The crew lands down on Capella IV in order to have a mining treaty signed. However a Klingon negotiator named Kras has also arrived on the planet trying to get the same treaty signed. If the Starfleet/Klingon Empire conflict isn't enough The Capellans are in a sort of bizarre civil war.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Star trek great series. Buy the complete set unless you are like me filling in a partial set.Published 8 months ago by Michael D Yust
It's too bad they started selling the original series individually and then switch over to boxed sets in the middle of collecting them.Published on March 28, 2013 by Gregory Foster
REVIEWED ITEM: Star Trek® Original Series DVD Volume 16: Metamorphosis© / Friday's Child©
METAMORPHOSIS© PRELIMINARY BRIEFS:
Moral, Ethical, and/or Philosophical... Read more
Only two episodes per DVD? Paramount has released videos overseas with THREE episodes per video,with new filmed introduction by actors like Walter Koenig and George Takei. Read morePublished on May 23, 2001