1×09 – Dagger of the Mind

Premise: A prisoner at a penal colony sneaks on board the Enterprise. Turns out he’s a well-known doctor who’s gone crazy. McCoy wants to study him, and Kirk goes down to investigate the penal colony. They’ve built a mind-control device, which they claim just relaxes the prisoners, but which really opens the mind to external suggestions. Kirk (stupidly) decides to test out the device on his own mind, getting himself into a heap of trouble!

6:40 – A little exchange between Spock & McCoy about violence:

Spock: “Interesting. Earth people glorify organized violence for 40 centuries. But you imprison those who employ it privately.”
McCoy: (Laced with annoyed sarcasm) “And of course your people found an answer.”
Spock: “We disposed of emotion, Doctor. Where there’s no emotion, there’s no motive for violence.”

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7:30 – The prisoner breaks onto the bridge with a phaser and is making demands of the Captain. Spock begins to slowly move towards the prisoner. Kirk notices this, and slowly walks to the right of the bridge, turning the prisoner’s attention towards him so Spock can sneak up on him. Then Spock grabs the prisoner, Kirk kicks the phaser out of his hand, and Spock uses the vulcan nerve pinch (the 3rd of the series). A perfectly coordinated Kirk/Spock maneuver!

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22:10 – The doctor tries to offer Kirk some advice (not very good advice, but we’ll ignore that for now) and he interrupts her with a very smug line: “One of the advantages of being a Captain, Doctor, is being able to ask for advice with out necessarily having to take it.” He sounds a bit condescending, but the doctor is being really annoying, so we’ll forgive him.

29:00 – Spock begins his first Vulcan mind meld on the series!

Voiceover: Enterprise log. First Officer Spock, acting Captain. I must now use an ancient Vulcan technique to probe into Van Gelder’s tortured mind.
[Spock is reluctant.]
McCoy: “Spock, if there’s the slightest possibility it might help -”
Spock: “I’ve never used it on a human, doctor.”
McCoy: “If there’s any way we can look into this man’s mind to see if what he’s saying is real or delusional -”
Spock: “It’s a hidden, personal thing to the Vulcan people. Part of our private lives.”
McCoy: [Angrily] “Now look, Spock, Jim Kirk could be in real trouble. Will it work or not?”
Spock walks over to Van Gelder.
Spock: “It could be dangerous. Do you understand? It requires I make pressure changes. To your nerves, your blood vessels.”
Van Gelder: “You must!”
Spock starts the meld. He places his hands on Van Gelder’s face.

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A few moments pass.
Spock: [In a strong whisper] “You’ll begin to feel a strange euphoria.” Pause. “Your body floats.”
Van Gelder: “Yes. I begin to feel it.”
Spock: “Open your mind. We move together. Our minds sharing the same thoughts.”
Spock proceeds to move around Van Gelder’s body, putting his hands on different parts of his face, and whispering. It’s kind of a sensual process. If he weren’t doing it to an old, crazy man, it would be rather sexy. Van Gelder is talking too much, though. If they are sharing thoughts, why does Van Gelder need to verbalize his memories?

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33:30 – While they’re still in the mind meld, Van Gelder lists a few emotion words (“Love…Hate…” etc.) and Spock responds to each by whispering the word “Yes.” It’s just funny to hear Spock say “yes…Yes…Yeess…Yeess…” πŸ˜‰

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Just a cute Spock facial expression from the episode:

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5 Comments on “1×09 – Dagger of the Mind”

  1. nailedblack Says:

    i love how you review every episode.

  2. HQ Says:

    How do you capture still-frames? I am so ignorant. And I want a certain frame involving some lovely blue leaves… [sighs, mumbles]

    And that last pic of Spock is . . . a true testament to his awesomeness.

    • ViRo Says:

      I have a Mac, and I downloaded a widget for my dashboard called “Screenshot Plus.” It allows you to take a picture of the entire screen or of a specific window. When I’m watching Star Trek on YouTube I just pause the video and take a shot of the entire window, then crop the image in Preview. In Windows, it might be as easy as using the “Print Screen” button…not sure. I hope that helps!

      Are they the humming blue leaves from The Menagerie Part I? πŸ™‚

      • HQ Says:

        bummer, i have windows (much to my chagrin). Ah well, i will figure it out somehow. And yes, those are indeed the leaves. That bit kind of cracked me up for some reason.

  3. mbk Says:

    Hi! I havent been visiting here for long but, really, thanks for your blog! I don’t have suitable friends living nearby, with whom we could sit down together, see these episodes and chit and chat – so i have enjoyed internet and your blog a lot. Please keep going!

    The last screencap of Dagger you put in the end – is it not in the beginnig where Spock and McCoy want Kirk to put up an inspection of the incident, and Kirk doesnt really want to?

    If “Jim” from Spock means (among other things) that Jim should listen, then Spocks expression very near the time this screencap has been taken means the same. Kirk is really been told what to do! (By the both of them, but of course bad feelings are not left in the end which makes me feel so comfortable with the series. Blush.)


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