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The Doomsday Machine
Production Number 35
Air Date (US) 1967-10-20
Season 2
DVD Disc No. 2
Watch Episode Trailer (.mov QuickTime format - 2.469 MB)See Episode Photos  
William Shatner as James T. Kirk
Leonard Nimoy as Spock
DeForest Kelley as Leonard H. McCoy
James Doohan as Montgomery Scott
George Takei as Hikaru Sulu

Guest Cast:
William Windom as Matt Decker
Elizabeth Rogers as Lt. Palmer
John Winston as Lt. Kyle
Richard Compton as Washburn
William Blackburn as Lt. Hadley
Eddie Paskey as Lt. Leslie
John Copage as Elliot
Jerry Catron as Montgomery

Creative Staff:
Director: Marc Daniels
Written By: Norman Spinrad
Sent to investigate the destruction of several planetary systems, the U.S.S. Enterprise discovers a crippled starship, the U.S.S. Constellation, floating in space. Commodore Matthew Decker is the only one left on the ship. Kirk and Scotty remain on board the Constellation to try and repair the starship, while McCoy beams Decker aboard the U.S.S. Enterprise.
Decker informs the crew that a giant robot ship, a planet-eating machine made by a long-dead alien race, is roaming the galaxies, consuming all in its path for fuel, including whole planets. When Decker challenged it, the "berserker," as he calls it, attacked. Decker beamed his entire crew to the planet's surface below, only to have the robot consume that planet, killing the Constellation's entire crew.

When the "berserker" returns, Decker, consumed with guilt over the loss of his crew, pulls rank on Spock and takes control of the U.S.S. Enterprise. He seems determined to destroy the machine, even at the cost of another ship and crew. Kirk, still on board the Constellation, contacts Spock and supports his claim that Decker is exhibiting suicidal behavior and is therefore unfit to command. Thwarted, Decker steals a shuttlecraft and flies it down the 'throat' of the giant robot ship, killing himself.

Realizing that Decker's idea, on a larger scale, might work, he sets the Constellation to self-destruct and send it after Decker's shuttlecraft. Due to a transporter glitch, Kirk barely makes it back to the U.S.S. Enterprise before the Constellation explodes, destroying the planet killer in its path.
Richard Compton (Washburn) returned to direct a first-season episode of Star Trek: The Next Generation. His assistant director: Charlie Washburn, for whom his character had been named exactly twenty years earlier!
Although Commander Decker (William Windom) dies at the end of the episode, Stephen Collins later portrayed his son, Will Decker, in Star Trek - The Motion Picture. Within a decade after this episode was first aired, Space: 1999 was to use a similar device for one of its stories: a ship graveyard - a sort of Bermuda Triangle on wheels, sucking in wayward craft.




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