The Immunity Syndrome is the eighteenth episode of the second season of the original Star Trek series and, let me tell you, it’s a great one. It’s entirely based on the wonderful relationship of friendship and respect between Mr. Spock and Dr. McCoy and they have memorable dialogues and interactions in it. But let’s start with a bit of plot: the USS Intrepid goes missing. It’s the only Starfleet ship with an entirely Vulcan crew! The Enterprise is sent to investigate.
Once they reached their destination, Chekov informs the captain that the entire Gamma 7A system had been destroyed, implying the death of the billions of people who lived there. Shortly thereafter the responsible for such a loss is discovered: it’s a giant amoeba! In short, here’s another colossal threat after the one faced in The Doomsday Machine. However, here the story is more poignant since, once inside the amoeba, the lights of the stars disappear and the Federation ship finds itself in absolute darkness, with harmful consequences for the crew’s mood (a similar thing happens to another Federation crew in the episode Night of the fifth season of Star Trek: Voyager). It should be emphasized that both the special effects and the soundtrack are really convincing, raising the quality of what was a simple television product to something immensely superior. In short, I can’t stop being amazed at how well this series was made back in the day!
And then we get to the main point of the episode: Captain Kirk must choose whether to send Spock or McCoy on a suicide mission. Here it’s fantastic to see how each of them wants to go, both demonstrating a commendable sense of duty. The two are bounded by a strong friendship which goes hand in hand with a certain rivalry, and in this case let’s add the will to claim the prize of saving the whole ship (even at the cost of one’s own life).
Needless to say, the mission turns out to be non-suicidal and permits to the two of them to continue loving/hating each other aboard the ship for a long time! This is truly a great episode, a memorable one. For example, it’s impossible to forget how McCoy fails to wish good luck to the Vulcan heading for the shuttle in the hangar scene. And there are many other moments like this scattered throughout the episode. At the end of this second season the trio Kirk – Spock – McCoy is certainly confirmed to be among the best ever seen in television history! Ciao!
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