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Season Three:
-56: "Spectre of the Gun"
-57: "Elaan of Troyius"
-58: "The Paradise Syndrome"
-63: "The Empath"
-65: "For the World is Hollow
& I Have Touched the Sky"

-78: "All Our Yesterdays"
-Season 3 Rankings

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Star Trek

Season 3 (1968-1969)


Best Story:

  1. The Enterprise Incident (Good guys can beam as much as they want, villains not? No shields on enemy vessel to prevent it? Otherwise a very good ep, with powerful draw.)
  2. Day of the Dove (excellent episode, though could have used more footage of triumphant cheer, resolution and aftermath)
  3. The Cloud Minders (A rare good one that isn't much confined to the Enterprise sets. Lots of sci-fi/social complexities developed for this one, and an adventurous odyssey as well.)
  4. Is There In Truth No Beauty? (Very rich emotional territory to explore, but short on adventure draw or production excitement)
  5. Elaan of Troyius
  6. The Tholian Web (McCoy's antagonism a bit over the top, but good use is made of this, and the episode is good)
  7. Let That Be Your Last Battlefield (very memorable premise and destruct sequence; good dialogue and acting. Definitely limited by low budget though. But one of S3's better ones.)

  8. Wink of an Eye (pretty good overall, but the last act flags. Why keep the solution secret and not help the Scalosians?)
  9. All Our Yesterdays
  10. The Mark of Gideon (has surprising heart, but didn't need overt romance. More concluding drama might have made it more highly memorable.)
  11. Turnabout Intruder (very unique premise, and some very good scenes amongst the crew. Perhaps some aspects clumsily handled, but still pretty good overall.)
  12. The Paradise Syndrome (Love the obelisk/deflector/asteroid plot and shipside drama, the paradise/amnesia concept, the Native American / Preserver cultural bits. But why did love and happiness need to be expressed with what the 60's reset-button episode format couldn't handle: marriage and pregnancy? Worse, the marriages are fixed instead of free, and the jealous ex-fiancé angle cliché and unsatisfying. This drags the ep down. But overall, it's a good one for S3.)
  13. The Lights of Zetar (Ah, yes. The belching women...)
  14. Requiem for Methuselah (has a nice literary sci-fi feel and atmosphere, and seemed headed for a high rank. Bizarrely the regulars are very unlike themselves in the end - Only Spock can decipher all the emotional blows, McCoy then treats him as if he's an idiot on the subject. Kirk is out of control and just weird. What the hell?)
  15. The Savage Curtain (healthy points for the rock creature and its planet, also for introducing Surak and Kahless to the show. But it loses many points for forcing a very staged and non-sci-fi conflict that can say very little of importance about humanoid nature.)
  16. Spectre of the Gun (a powerful ending and good main Trekkian mission, but it spends a lot of time off-point, and pointlessly carts in Coon's reverse instinct... again. Probably fewer good scenes/moments than "Spock's Brain")
  17. The Way to Eden (much merit to its main point, some good philosophical scenes, and Chekov's best subplot ever. Mostly, it's some bad songs and corny imagery pulling this one down.)
  18. For the World is Hollow, and I Have Touched the Sky (decent episode, very rich setting and background, struggling to find a worthy drama that makes sense)
  19. That Which Survives (very good plot, background, & environment, but what's with all the obtuse dialogue? It sticks out like a sore thumb, drags the episode down, and leaves us further wondering what this episode wanted to be all about...)
  20. Spock's Brain (the premise stretches credulity, but the plot remains dynamic and keeps interest high scene for scene. Good exploration of star system's societal backdrop)

  21. And the Children Shall Lead (slow in places, and sometimes questionable acting required... but not bad overall; some good ideas)
  22. The Empath (easily the least entertaining season three story to this point in the production chronology)
  23. Whom Gods Destroy (another senseless hour-long capture/escape routine)
  24. Plato's Stepchildren (one long boring capture/escape routine, filled with silly acting and moronic posturing. Not my idea of fulfilling entertainment.)

Best Music:

  1. Fred Steiner: Elaan of Troyius
  2. Gerald Fried: The Paradise Syndrome
  3. Jerry Fielding: Spectre of the Gun
  4. George Duning: Is There In Truth No Beauty?
  5. Alexander Courage: The Enterprise Incident

  6. Fred Steiner: Spock's Brain
  7. Fred Steiner - S1 tracked for The Tholian Web (Charlie X)
  8. George Duning: The Empath (music is nice, but why didn't they track this episode with In Truth No Beauty and other music, and commission an original score for a more exciting episode?)
  9. Ivan Ditmars: Requiem for Methuselah "Pseudo Brahms" on piano
  10. William Pitman: The Way to Eden "Far Out Jam"
  11. Alexander Courage: Plato's Stepchildren (ditto, why not score a better episode and track this stinker?)
  12. George Duning: And the Children Shall Lead
  13. Heinemann/Napier/Robertson: The Way to Eden "Headin' Out to Eden" (nice haunting melody, but not great as a sung piece)
  14. Wilbur Hatch: The Savage Curtain "Salute to Our President Fanfare"

  15. Heinemann/Napier/Robertson: The Way to Eden (other songs) (a whole new level of crap)

Best Directing:

  1. John Meredith Lucas: The Enterprise Incident
  2. Ralph Senensky: Is There In Truth No Beauty?
  3. Herb Wallerstein: The Tholian Web
  4. Jud Taylor: The Cloud Minders
  5. Jud Taylor: Let That Be Your Last Battlefield
  6. John Meredith Lucas: Elaan of Troyius
  7. Marvin Chomsky: Day of the Dove
  8. Herb Wallerstein: Turnabout Intruder
  9. Jud Taylor: Wink of an Eye
  10. Jud Taylor: The Mark of Gideon
  11. Marvin Chomsky: All Our Yesterdays
  12. Herschel Dougherty: The Savage Curtain
  13. Vincent McEveety: Spectre of the Gun
  14. Jud Taylor: The Paradise Syndrome
  15. Herb Kenwith: The Lights of Zetar
  16. Murray Goldman: Requiem for Methuselah

  17. Herb Wallerstein: That Which Survives
  18. Marc Daniels: Spock's Brain
  19. David Alexander: The Way to Eden
  20. Herb Wallerstein: Whom Gods Destroy
  21. Tony Leader: For the World is Hollow, and I Have Touched the Sky
  22. John Erman: The Empath (some valiant work to salvage a dismal script)
  23. Marvin Chomsky: And the Children Shall Lead
  24. David Alexander: Plato's Stepchildren

Read the next Star Trek review: "Yesteryear"

These Season Three stories are available on DVD and Blu-Ray.
Click on the Amazon symbol for the desired disc format and location nearest you for pricing and availability:

Star Trek Season Three "Purist" Standard DVD Box Set:

Watch the legend mature to the end of its original run. Set contains all 24 episodes from the third season in their original wacky broadcast order, plus new bonus features including a specially restored version of the original pilot "The Cage".

As someone interested in researching how the episodes actually looked and sounded originally, and when and exactly how certain musical cues first debuted, this was the DVD set for me, and it remains the most untampered-with full-season collection of Star Trek out there. Unique extras include pure text commentaries on select episodes. Sadly, these sets are starting to become rare, and prices are now rising as these become collectors' items....


DVD Canada


Standard DVD Extras include:

  • To Boldly Go... Season Three featurette (22 min.)
  • Life Beyond Trek: Walter Koenig (11 min.)
  • Chief Engineer's Log (6 min.)
  • Memoir from Mr. Sulu (9 min.)
  • Star Trek's Impact (9 min.)
  • Original Prop recreation featurette (7 min.)
  • Text Commentaries on "The Savage Curtain" and "Turnabout Intruder"
  • "Red Shirt Logs" Easter Eggs (19 min. total)
  • Production Art (still menus)
  • Original Trailers for every season 3 episode (1 min. each)
  • "The Cage" (all colour, 63 min.)
  • "The Cage" (BW/colour mix + Gene's intro, 71 min.)

Standard DVD remastered with CGI:
Region 1, NTSC, U.S.
Region 1, NTSC, Canada
Region 2, PAL, U.K.

The Original Series Remastered Sets

The re-mastered Star Trek set for season three, like that of season two, seems destined to be obsolete in very short order. Its content is easily surpassed by the more respectful presentation on Blu-ray, and unlike the "purist" DVD release listed above, appears to have none of its own exclusive content. Add to that the very gimmicky, awkward packaging that is prone to damage both during shipping and with light usage, and I'd have to recommend that all devoted Trekkers should consider other options for their ideal TOS season three product.

Season Three - Blu Ray

  24 episodes @ 51 minutes, plus pilot episodes...
Star Trek sets are now available on Blu Ray. Picture and sound quality restoration has gone up yet another notch since the remastered version, as have the liberties taken with "upgrading" the episodes. Once again, even newer CGI effects and optical shots have replaced many space scenes, matte paintings, and phaser effects.... but this time the upgrades have the same respect and user-functionality applied to select Doctor Who DVD releases since 2002, as the CGI effects can now be turned off to see the original effects. Good show. It seems that the music has still been tampered with too much for my liking though.

Blu-ray U.S.

Blu-ray Canada

Blu-ray U.K.

Blu-ray features include:

  • option to watch original or new CGI effects.
  • "Where No Man Has Gone Before" (unaired version, HD)
  • Captain's Log: Bob Justman (HD, 10 min.)
  • Behind-the-scenes 8mm home movies part 3 (HD, 11 min.) from Billy Blackburn (Lt. Hadley / DeForest Kelley stand-in)
  • David Gerrold hosts "2009 Convention Coverage" (HD, 20 min.)
  • "The Anthropology of Star Trek" ComiCon Panel 2009 (HD, 4 min.)
  • "The World of Rod Roddenberry" ComiCon 2009 (HD, 7 min.)
  • BD Live Portal
  • main featurettes from previous releases
  • "The Cage" pilot versions from previous releases

Review written by Martin Izsak. Comments on this article are welcome. You may contact the author from this page:

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Read the next Star Trek review: "Yesteryear"

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