The Enemy Within - episode #5

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The Enemy Within - episode #5

Post  BoG on Tue Mar 09, 2010 8:54 pm


THE ENEMY WITHIN (1st season; episode #5)
Directed by Leo Penn / writer: Richard Matheson

Just who is Captain Kirk...really? Is he, in essence, brutal...a thoughtless animal, when all the surface cover is stripped away? Or is he actually gentle, a meek, passive man who pretends to be aggressive? It is, of course, much more complicated, as is the case with most human beings. But, the title of this episode is misleading and so are the first few scenes. The second Kirk who materializes on the transporter platform after a strange malfunction is not a duplicate of the real Capt. Kirk, nor is he, as it turns out, an enemy to Kirk's existence. Kirk himself gets it wrong as he describes what happened in his log. Neither of the Kirks after the credits is the real one in this episode. They are both just half of the real Kirk, who no longer exists at this point.
The meek, mild half is more difficult to notice as not being quite the real Kirk, as his confidence slips away more gradually. The violent, animal-like half gives himself away more easily as he demands Saurian brandy from Dr. McCoy and then tries to rape Yeoman Rand. Yes, the crew who encounter this, uh, angry version of Kirk still believe it is really Capt. Kirk, but it's as if he's taken some bad drugs lately - not very captain-like behavior.  
Excitable.




It's an actor's dream to portray so varied a version of one character, as well as to enact a 'doppelganger' episode (as would happen in several other episodes). Shatner subtly captures the gentle aspects of the 'good' Kirk and also gets to tap into his inner rage with his performance as the so-called evil Kirk version in this episode. This version of Kirk is always sweating, eyes furtive, and then usually there's a spasm into a screaming fit as if he's totally out of control or seriously ill. It's a startling transition whenever we switch from the calm, tired Kirk - who is also ill, though in a more benign fashion - to this obvious madman (the lighting and make-up in these scenes also helps).
However, by the 3rd act, we learn, via Spock's analytical observations, that all of Kirk's power of command rests in this evil half. Of course, the entire episode is about expanding on and examining the usually simplistic concepts of good and evil; the supposed negative side of Kirk is needed for him to function as captain. We humans are made up of many parts, this story says, and all of these are necessary, whether labeled positive or negative (one can say the same for most business and political leaders).
This episode has some pretty intense moments, especially the scene of the negative Kirk attacking Rand - it's a bit too real and is uncomfortable to watch, a disturbing depiction of attempted rape. It certainly was not filmed gratuitously, with the actress (Whitney) realistically trembling in fear for most of it and enduring some rough physical action. This scene also spells out - to the discomfort of some, I'm sure - that a part of Kirk truly desires Rand in that most basic fashion; we can't pretend otherwise after this episode, no matter how dutiful & professional or blase Kirk may act in other episodes. I'm not sure what to make of Spock's snide remark to her at the end of the episode - maybe his intent was to diffuse the whole thing, but it seemed quite inappropriate - though she just took it in stride.
The glaring flaw in the episode, in retrospect, is that no shuttlecrafts were sent to rescue the men trapped on the planet below from freezing to death. Maybe the crafts were all in disrepair or there was something in the atmosphere (or maybe they weren't written into the show, yet). Of course, this added dilemma of crew members slowly dying served to underscore the positive Kirk's growing indecision on such matters. It was probably in this episode that we first learned how infallible a starship captain must be, even if just for the sake of appearance.
BoG's Score: 7.5 out of 10
Extra Trek Trivia: writer Richard Matheson scripted this; among his many works is the famous The Incredible Shrinking Man and Duel (TV-71). Here was the first use of Spock's famed Vulcan nerve pinch, suggested by actor Nimoy as an alternative to simply striking the bad Kirk from behind. Here's Shatner on the Mike Douglas Show in 1969, explaining his process as an actor in this episode: and  
____________ footage with music audio of Gravity of Love by Enigma - an interesting experiment,by TrekkieGirl


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Enemy Within full episode

Post  BoG on Sun Mar 28, 2010 4:34 pm

Classic Trek Quotes:
McCoy: "It's dead, Jim." - the first episode McCoy utters this "dead" line, though it's in reference to an alien dog here; usually it's about a crewman or other human.



Back to the bottle again Captain...?


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original Enemy Within

Post  BoG on Sun Dec 26, 2010 5:46 pm

Here's some background information on The Enemy Within...  Richard Matheson wrote the script and his original ending was even more provocative that the one filmed with Spock & Rand! As is well known, in the finished episode Spock hinted to Rand at the end that she might have liked some of the brutal Kirk's attentions and Rand acted like a team player in response, rather than slapping the Vulcan. Here's the original script:
MATHESON'S ORIGINAL ENDING

In Sickbay McCoy tells Kirk not to worry about the crew finding out about his dark side:

McCOY
The same thing would have happened to any one of us
who'd gone through the Transporter at that particular
time.  We all have an enemy within.
(beat; smiling)
It's the human condition.

           Kirk smiles back and the doctor pats his arm, leaves to help his patients.  Kirk starts for the corridor.

           INT. BRIDGE - MOVING SHOT - CLOSE ON KIRK

           As he emerges from the elevator and moves to Mr. Spock who is at his customary place at the Library-Computer station.

           SPOCK
           Captain.

           KIRK
           I want to thank you, Mr. Spock.
           I couldn't have made it without you.

           SPOCK
           (nods once)
           What will you tell the crew?

           KIRK
           That the impostor was put back-
           (pause; smiling)
           - where he belongs.

           JANICE'S VOICE
           To die, Captain?

           INCLUDING JANICE

           JANICE
           The... "impostor" told me what
           really happened.

           KIRK
           (a little stunned)
           Oh?

           JANICE
           And I just wanted to say that I
           hope he hasn't died.

           KIRK
           (still off balance)
           Why?

           JANICE
           Because he has some very interesting qualities.

           She turns away, smiling cooly.  Kirk stares after, then looks at Spock who clears his throat and moves off.  Repressing a smile, Kirk goes to his chair, sits.  Briefly, he savors the moment, then flicks on his Communicator.

           KIRK
           (with full authority)
           This is the Captain speaking.

           EXT. SPACE - FULL SHOT - U.S.S. ENTERPRISE

           As it moves off into the night of stars.

           FADE OUT.

           THE END
It's beginning to look to me that they changed it to make Spock a bit of a villain so as not to make Rand appear like a lady really into S&M abuse and so on. Here's the site from where I sourced this: ENEMY WITHIN BACKGROUND MATERIAL

Finally, here's a link to a YouTube video which re-edits scenes from The Enemy Within into proper order:


It has also come to light that some scenes in the finished version of the episode were edited into a slightly wrong order. For example, I always thought there was something off about that scene where Kirk is told of the transporter problem and "if this should happen to a man..." and Kirk starts to say "Oh my G.." - the article link above and the YouTube video explain why it seems off.
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