Monday, July 13, 2009

Star Trek--"Requiem for Methuselah"

“Requiem for Methuselah” is another episode for which there is nothing fundamentally wrong, but still does not satisfy. I am not certain whether it is the character of Flint, the his secret plan for Rayna, or a combination of the two. Either way, there is not much to recommend here.

The Enterprise is suffering from a plague. The ship stops on a supposedly barren planet where they can gather a cure from natural resources. They are surprised to find a human, Flint, living there with a beautiful woman, Rayna. It takes some convincing for Flint to allow the crew to gather the resources they need. Along the way, they discover Flint is an immortal from earth who has either been or knew some of the greatest minds in history. He has created Rayna to be the perfect woman, but she is not complete until Kirk naturally falls for her. The climactic conflict between Kirk and Flint overwhelms her new found emotions and she dies.

As a history buff, the concept of flint cheapens Earth history for me. I do not like the idea onw man has been so pivotal to Earth’s development for 6,000 years. Flint has been everyone from Methuselah to Solomon to Alexander the Great and Leonardo da Vinci. It does not seem right to think one man could have so many different talents and personality types while completely abandoning some of them when he decides to change his identity. I suppose one could become bored with anything over time, but it is difficult to imagine. It is also cheap to have given him an inexplicable ability to regenerate tissue in order to stay immortal. It just does not sing or dance, you know what I mean?

As for Rayna, the idea of Kirk falling madly in love with yet another woman is cliched. How may times in a three year period can one become so hopelessly attached to a woman, particularly when he is so willing to have casual sex with any attractive woman who comes along--even if she is trying to take over the ship, for heaven’s sake! I understand emotions were new to her. An emotional breakdown would be inevitable when she is conflicted between Kirk and Flint, but death? Come on. That was just a trite way of getting rid of her which was way too implausible.

I have to debate the morality of Spock wiping Kirk’s mind of Rayna's memory as well. Is it really a good idea to get rid of bad memories? Yes, they are unpleasant, but they are a part of what shapes us. Living with the pain of bad memories toughens us up. Spock is giving Kirk a crutch that might hurt in the future should Kirk run into another woman who breaks his heart. Experience is the best teacher in dealing with such things. He did not have kirk’s consent, either. Why Spock thought this was a logical move is beyond me.

Rating: *** (out of 5)

No comments:

Post a Comment