What Ships Are For

July 30, 2017

“What Ships Are For”: B

Kirk must convince an alien species to embrace their most hated adversaries on a world entirely devoid of color.

Air date: July 30, 2017

Teleplay by Kipleigh Brown

Story by Vic Mignogna, James Kerwin & Kipleigh Brown

Directed by Vic Mignogna

“They’re willing to die for the chance to live where they can be safe and free. Why not help them?” – Kirk

Mignogna takes the director’s reigns for the third time in this last “normal” episode of his series, an immigration allegory guest starring John de Lancie as a planet leader afraid of outsiders and unaware that they actually live amongst his people.

The most striking feature of the episode is “Dorothy in Kansas” idea of a planet where everyone sees in black and white (including the Enterprise crew), with the writers supplying a scientific explanation for it; and thanfully, the device itself does prove relevant to the plot. But Mignogna never loses sight of the characters themselves, with Battlestar Galactica’s Anne Lockhart giving a fine performance as the planet leader’s wife and anime voiceover artist Elizabeth Maxwell standing out as the first inhabitant of the planet to experience the gift of seeing in color.

It is, however, Kirk himself, played by Mignogna, who serves as the focal point of the episode, with the captain having to thread his way through a tricky maze of romance, racism, and xenopobia. As an actor, Mignogna continues to impress, somehow finding Kirk within him without having to impersonate Shatner in an obvious way. And by successfully contrasting big ideas with small humourous moments in a way that’s reminscient of TOS, he gives us yet another episode that can proudly take its place next to many of Star Trek’s original offerings.

Grey HR Line

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