You know they're not going to kill him yet.
Well, yeah. I watched The Doomsay Machine a few days ago, and even the first time I saw that episode I was never in doubt as to Kirk's survival. And yet the tension works.
When do they ever actually kill Kirk ? Well, Generations and Into Darkness. The latter is just temporary, that's all.
Wouldn't it have been something to have him permanently dead, however ?