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STAR TREK, The Original TV Series


Anthony Call, Clint Howard, Grace Lee Whitney


After destoying a threatening probe, the Enterprise encounters a huge alien spaceship commanded by fierce looking alien.


Episodes features a great bluff pulled off by Captain Kirk. Check out young Clint Howard ("Gentle Ben") as a child-like alien. The FX depicting the huge alien ship Fesarius, side by side with the tiny Enterprise, are pretty cool.


The Enterprise maps a previously unexplored area of space. When an odd cube is encountered, sending out deadly energy, the Enterprise destroys it.

A huge alien ship, the Fesarius shows up, bummed out because Kirk blew up its beacon and is trespassing. The alien vessel threatens to blow up the Enterprise in ten minutes. Kirk uses a bluff, the Corbomite Maneuver, to avoid destruction.

A smaller ship separates from the larger alien vessel. Kirk and company beam aboard the smaller ship. Instead of a monster, the alien turns out to be a small, friendly, child-like being.


Director Joseph Sargent's, THE CORBOMITE MANEUVER, is a clever, thought provoking Sci-Fi episode, that includes some elements of; "The Wizard of Oz". Sargent's other directing credits include: "Colossus-The Forbin Project".

The alien Balok's vessel, the Fesarius, is a gigantic ship, composed of numerous collected spheres. Shots of the Enterprise, dwarfed by the huge Fesarius, are impressive.

When we first see Balok on a view screen, we see a spooky, grim-faced alien. We later learn that this is a dummy, and not the real Balok. The late Ted Cassidy, Lurch, on TV's The Addams Family, provided the voice for the false Balok.

My favorite scene is the one in which Kirk, threatened with the destruction of the Enterprise, bluffs Balok with a made up story about the substance, "Corbomite". He tells Balok that Corbomite, in the hull of the Enterprise, will cause any destructive beams fired at it to bounce off and destroy the attacker.

Child actor, Clint Howard ("Gentle Ben") is engaging as the "real" Balok. The late Vic Perrin provide the voice for the "real" Balok. He was best known as, "The Control Voice" on "The Outer Limits". The grown up Howard showed up recently in the short lived CBS Sci-Fi series, "Space Rangers", and also played a criminal on a "Seinfeld" episode.

"THE CORBOMITE MANEUVER" should be fairly watchable for most Sci-Fi viewers. "Wizard of Oz" fans may appreciate the episode's twist ending.

BEST BETS: Balance of Terror, The Tholian Web, The Enterprise Incident

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