The Rewatch 64: Whom Gods Destroy

Series: Star Trek (The Original Series)
Episode: 3.14 Whom Gods Destroy (01-03-1969)
Rating: 3/5
Redshirt Status: 0/3/49

Notable Guest Stars:
 Yvonne Craig – Marta.  She is Batgirl.
Keye Luke
– Governor Donald Cory. known for his roles in the Charlie Chan films, and Green Hornet.
Steve Ihnat
– Fleet Captain Garth He appeared in a two parter of The Outer Limits in 1964.  He was also a veteran.

Review:

 Today we take a tour of yet another mental institution. Spock and Kirk arrive on the planet to give Governor Cory a medication that appears to have quite a good effect in the recent studies.  However, before they got there one of the inmates, a Former Fleet Captain named Garth, took over the institution.

I am somewhat concerned that a colony built to deal with those who are mentally ill would be so inadequately staffed.  The only person I saw in this episode was the Governor till right at the end.  Which implies that either Garth managed to kill/detain all the staff, or they literally thought it was okay to have one man deal with all the patients.

It is also implied that this particular colony is dealing with higher crime patients. Garth himself wanted to destroy a whole planet which caused his crew to mutiny.  This is a horrible place for patients too.  They are completely in cased inside a building. There are windows, but only to the outside which is full of toxic gases and an unhospitalable environment.  Unlike the earlier facility there does not seem to be anywhere for the patients to be other then in treatment rooms and prison style cells. 

I would have thought that if they were dealing with patients, they would have some sort of outside area prepared, even if its partially artificial.  A courtyard or something.  None of this space seems conducive to healing.

Mental health is still a subject that is debated now.  Its largely ignored as part of the regular health of a person. It has gotten better in the last few decades, but even now we have a long ay to go in both the treatment of persons with a mental health problem and the treatment of said health problems.

Kirk and Spock manage to figure things out and save the day (and the patients except for one) but I think Kirk is still a bit annoyed it took Spock so long to figure out which one was him.

Interesting Notes:

  • Directed by Herb Wallerstein
  • Written by Lee Erwin and Jerry Sohl
  •  Banned by the BBC till mid-90s for violence and sexual scenes.
  • This is the first episode to air in 1969, which would the last year for this series.

Pros:

  •  For once they seem to understand a problem may exist, so they set up a code phrase for beaming up.  Now if only they could figure out a failsafe like that for holodecks.
  • I like how Spock is basically “He’s wordy, and emotional but he’s right.”

Cons:

  •  Therapeutic methods being used as torture.
  • Where is the staff?  Does Dr. Cory have no nurses or other doctors?  Are they all locked up in some room somewhere? 

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