“Beyond the Farthest Star” is the pilot episode and series premiere of the animated American science fiction television series Star Trek.
This series premiere episode first aired in the NBC Saturday morning lineup at 10:30 a.m. on 08 September 1973, seven years to the day after the series premiere of the live action series which started the franchise.
It was written by American author and script writer Samuel A. Peeples who had also written the Original Series second pilot “Where No Man Has Gone Before“.
In this episode, the Enterprise crew must contend with a malevolent non-corporeal alien entity that has taken control of the ship and tries to force them to help it escape the massive gravity well of a dead star.
On stardate 5221.3, while exploring on the outermost rim of the galaxy the Federation starship Enterprise is pulled into the orbit of a dead star. Trapped there, the crew discovers that there is a massive derelict 300,000,000-year-old pod ship trapped with them as well.
Captain Kirk beams aboard the huge starship with a boarding party that includes First Officer Spock, Chief Medical Officer Dr. McCoy and Chief Engineer Scott, where they learn it was once home to an insectoid race. They also learn from a pre-recorded message left behind that the ship had become almost completely controlled by a malevolent entity seeking a means to escape the dead sun and travel to other worlds. The ship’s crew had created an isolated chamber that the entity did not control, and from there recorded a warning message and then self-destructed their own ship rather than let it be used by the entity. The entity begins trying to pierce into the isolated chamber where the Enterprise party is and manages to beam back with them.
Quickly fleeing into the workings of the ship, it disables the self-destruct mechanism and tries to force the crew to do its bidding.
Finally, Kirk flies the Enterprise toward the dead star in what appears to be a suicide run, but in actuality is part of a sling-shot manoeuvre for escaping its massive gravity. The entity believes the ship will crash and be destroyed and so flees, with the Enterprise successfully escaping both it and the dead star.
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Production & Filming Details
- Director(s): Hal Sutherland.
- Writer(s): Samuel A. Peeples.
- Release Date: 08 September 1973.
- Running Time: 30 minutes.
- Country: US.
- Language: English.