Must see TOS episodes

Discussion in 'Star Trek - Original Series' started by bbjeg, Jul 1, 2013.

  1. bbjeg

    bbjeg Admiral Admiral

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    My father was a TOS Trekkie and since I was a kid, we've gathered in front of the TV to watch TNG, DS9, Voyager, and all of the movies but I never got around to watch TOS all the way through. I've heard mixed feelings toward the series and instead of watching every episode, I was wondering which are the best/must see episodes of TOS. Watching every episode of the following series and movies, I get the story but I'm looking for those "oh, that's how that started" or "that's where he is from" episodes.

    Their are top 10 threads but I'm also interested in continuation stories followed up in the later series.
     
  2. alexianyc

    alexianyc Ensign Red Shirt

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    A few suggestions, if what you're looking for is sort of how things got started.

    The second pilot, Where No Man Has Gone Before. Kirk is the captain, Spock is there, but the rest of the crew isn't there yet, and it's interesting to see how the show changed from WNMHGB.

    The Menagerie, a two part episode which includes footage from the first pilot. It gives Star Trek the feel of an actual world with a history and Spock a backstory.

    Balance of Terror - where the the Romulans appear.

    Errand of Mercy - where the Klingons appear.

    Amok Time - which has Vulcan history and, um, interesting mating rituals.
     
  3. BillJ

    BillJ Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Season One:

    The Cage - first episode
    Where No Man Has Gone Before - first Kirk episode
    The Corbomite Maneuver - first production episode
    The Naked Time - character episode, first time travel
    Balance of Terror - first Romulan episode
    Tomorrow is Yesterday - first time travel to "present" day Earth
    The Return of the Archons - first mention of the Prime Directive
    This Side of Paradise - some Spock backstory
    Errand of Mercy - first Klingon episode
    The City on the Edge of Forever - first time we see the effects of time travel, consensus best episode of the series
     
  4. Nero's Shadow

    Nero's Shadow Captain Captain

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    Amok time is a must !!!
     
  5. Harvey

    Harvey Admiral Admiral

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    As far as episodes that are continued go...

    "The Naked Time" has a sequel (more of a remake, really) on TNG.
    "Errand of Mercy" has a prequel on ENT.
    "Mirror Mirror" has several sequels on DS9.
    "Journey to Babel" introduces Sarek, who reappears in several of the movies and TNG, as well as several aliens which are important to ENT.
    "The Tholian Web" has a sequel on ENT (which is also a sequel to "Mirror, Mirror").

    The Klingons from "Errand of Mercy," "The Trouble with Tribbles," and "Day of the Dove" reappear on DS9 (one is also on VOY).
     
  6. bbjeg

    bbjeg Admiral Admiral

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    Thanks for the checklists. It's a good start point. I feel I'm not missing too much skipping about TOS, being a fan of everything else after it.
     
  7. ZapBrannigan

    ZapBrannigan Commodore Commodore

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    Rather than watch just a short list, how about putting in the time as a general Star Trek fan and watch the majority of episodes?

    If you want to avoid the disappointments, I suggest you skip:

    • The Alternative Factor
    • And the Children Shall Lead
    • Plato's Stepchildren
    • Whom Gods Destroy
    • The Way to Eden
    • The Cloud Minders
    • The Savage Curtain
    You'll miss a lot of things that we're nostalgic about that aren't really that great, and this way you'll see all the really good episodes.
     
  8. Nero's Shadow

    Nero's Shadow Captain Captain

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    Another one of my favourites is The Apple love that episode got some great stuff redshirts deaths loads of them Spock getting stung, struck by lighting some great exchanges from McCoy and Spock !!! And overall a good episode !!!
     
  9. Gov Kodos

    Gov Kodos Admiral Admiral

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    Spock's Brain, great entertainment and wonderful corrective to the idea that this show is some visionary masterpiece.
     
  10. marksound

    marksound Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    All good, highly recommended.

    Some friends and I went to a local club meeting in about 1975. They showed The Apple on 16mm, and it was a little disappointing. Not my favorite episode. :/
     
  11. bbjeg

    bbjeg Admiral Admiral

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    The "Must see"'s mention was just the spur I needed to watch the whole series though I would like to skip the disappointing episodes. If anyone objects to this list or wants to add to it, I'll take your word for it.
     
  12. Mario de Monti

    Mario de Monti Captain Captain

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    Well like everything else, this is mostly a matter of taste and personal preference. I actually quite like The Way to Eden (the "hippie episode") and Whom Gods Destroy as well as The Cloud Minders are intersting too, IMHO.

    I would rather skip these episodes:

    • Assignment: Earth - It was intended as a spin-off episode to a new TV show (set on earth) that never came to be, and thus focuses on the "new" characters, instead of Kirk & Co. In addition, it´s yet another time travel episode that takes place on (then) present day earth - I don´t care much for those.
    • A Piece of the Action - While somewhat entertaining at times, it´s mostly silly, IMO: Kirk & Co. discover a "mob planet" modelled after Chicago in the 1920s and dress and behave accordingly.
    • Patterns of Force - Kirk & Co. discover a "Nazi Planet" ... and dress and behave accordingly. A very questionable episode, IMHO. It was actually banned in Germany for decades.
    Anyway, that´s just my suggestion, YMMV :)
     
  13. ZapBrannigan

    ZapBrannigan Commodore Commodore

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    Okay, he can skip "Assignment: Earth"-- if he's not a Teri Garr fan and doesn't love cats or the Saturn V rocket.

    "Patterns of Force" has some imagery that is striking (literally) and unforgettable, especially where Kirk and Spock are interrogated. But it's not a big must-see.

    "A Piece of the Action" is a good comedy, on a par with "The Trouble with Tribbles," and as such I say leave it in.
     
  14. CaptPapa

    CaptPapa Commander Red Shirt

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    I really do not know . . .

    That's the problem - taking someone else's word for the quality, or lack of in the episodes. It's all subjective; so why not watch them all and reach your own conclusion.
     
  15. Mario de Monti

    Mario de Monti Captain Captain

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    That IS the best solution - if you´re willing to watch all the episodes. Even the most "critically acclaimed" or fan-favourite episodes you personally may not like at all - and vice versa.
    That´s actually true with several episodes (and movies) for me :)
     
  16. LOKAI of CHERON

    LOKAI of CHERON Commodore Commodore

    As others have stated, it's all a matter of personal taste. My comments on the list above.

    The Alternative Factor - A ridiculously over maligned episode. Personally, I love it - DO NOT skip.

    And The Children Shall Lead - Not great by any means (well short of greatness in actuality), but not truly horrible either. Worth a watch at least once.

    Plato's Stepchildren - Pretty good actually, although some of the "antics" might either have you thinking WTF, howling with laughter or both!

    Whom Gods Destroy - I like this one quite a lot. Lord Garth is awesome!

    The Way To Eden - This is my least favourtie TOS entry. If you must skip epsiodes I guess you won't really be missing anything here.

    The Savage Curtain - One of my favourites from Season 3 - DO NOT skip.
     
  17. ZapBrannigan

    ZapBrannigan Commodore Commodore

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    I can totally see Lokai's point of view, and in fact I must like my own least favorites for some reason, because I've seen them a hundred times. :bolian:
     
  18. LOKAI of CHERON

    LOKAI of CHERON Commodore Commodore

    Ain't that the truth! :techman:
     
  19. Nero's Shadow

    Nero's Shadow Captain Captain

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    Fridays child is another not to miss great episode !!! Some good interactions with McCoy and Spock and McCoy says his best line I'm a doctor not a elevator !!!!
     
  20. publiusr

    publiusr Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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