(covers information from several alternate timelines)
In Greek mythology, Apollo was one of the most important Olympian deities and demigods. The son of the god Zeus and the Human Leto, he was the god of light and purity. He was often associated with prophecy, medicine, music and poetry, archery, and the care of flocks and herds.
He was also frequently associated with the higher developments of civilization, such as law, philosophy, and the arts. Finally, in Greek mythology, Apollo driving his chariot through the sky was associated with the movement of the Sun. He was twin brother to Artemis, goddess of hunting, though Athena was also a sister of his as well. (TOS: "Who Mourns for Adonais?")
Apollo claimed he and his fellow travelers visited Earth, and there thrived on the worship and love of its people. But eventually, mankind turned away from the gods, and he and the others returned home. As the others each eventually gave up hope, they left their physical existence. Only Apollo was confident that mankind would one day leave Earth, and find the gods again. And when it happened, he planned to "restore the proper order" – to restore man to a worshipful species, provided for and loved by a new race of gods, fathered by him. (TOS: "Who Mourns for Adonais?")
Meanwhile on Earth, the image of Apollo was preserved for thousands of years in artistic works. One of these artistic works, the design for the mission insignia of Apollo 17, included a profile of Apollo facing to his left. Additionally, the mission insignia for Apollo 13 depicted the steeds of Apollo riding over Luna. (ENT: "First Flight")
In 2267, the USS Enterprise encountered Apollo on Pollux IV. There, they learned that the Greek gods were in fact a band of explorers who had visited Earth five thousand years earlier, and established themselves as gods to the people of that era. From things Apollo said to Carolyn Palamas, it seems that they may actually have, in some sense, considered themselves to be gods, but it is clear they also knew they weren't gods in the same sense the ancient Greeks believed them to be.
On approach to the planet, the ship encountered what appeared, visually, to be an enormous, translucent, green humanoid hand. In fact, it was a force field, conventional in composition but on unusual wavelengths, generated by Apollo. This field was powerful enough to stop the ship, and impulse engines could not break the ship free.
Attempts to push it away with the tractor beam, and to reverse its polarity were equally unsuccessful in disrupting it. In addition to merely holding the ship, Apollo could exert pressure beyond the ship's tolerance, and in this fashion, threaten the ship. Spock was eventually able to pierce the field with powerful bursts of M-rays on carefully calculated wavelengths. Although this did not destroy the field, it enabled the Enterprise to fire her phasers. (TOS: "Who Mourns for Adonais?")
Prior to 2263 in the alternate reality, it had been speculated that the USS Franklin's disappearance was possibly the result of an encounter with "a giant, green space hand" possibly being that of Apollo. (Star Trek Beyond)
During their visit, Apollo came across as arrogant and accustomed to obedience from his "children" – really, his slaves. While claiming to be in love with Carolyn Palamas, after she rejected him he showed signs that he wanted to control her like the slave-master her captain said he truly was – forbidding her to leave his presence and ordering her to stay there with him, for instance. When he seduced her, his words implied that he was offering her joint rule of Pollux IV, to sit by his side as his queen. During Carolyn's rejection of him, Apollo stated to her that he has "chosen her" for that duty, and earlier he noted her fearlessness, commenting that she is "fit indeed" to be his consort.
Despite this he did show some signs of a softer side. It is implied that the loss of his family and worshippers had left him terribly lonely. He did indicate that he would have truly cared for the Humans under his rule, and for the woman that would have had become his queen, despite Kirk's notions of him being a slave-master initially. He showed extreme despondency at being rejected by Humanity, and Carolyn especially, and knowing that he had waited in vain.
Eventually Apollo was eventually overcome by the Enterprise and her crew, who subsequently destroyed the source of his power.
After the temple was destroyed, Apollo demonstrated that he still retained some abilities, however, from his reaction to the temple's destruction, it seems likely that when he expended the last of his stored energy, he would be powerless, or nearly so.
|Aphrodite • Apollo • Artemis • Asclepius • Athena • Atlas • Hephaestus • Hera • Hermes • Pan • Zeus|
See also Edit
Background information Edit
The depiction of Apollo in "Who Mourns for Adonais" was considerably changed during the episode's rewrite process. Writer and story editor D.C. Fontana offered, "He was [originally] something of an empty character and we needed to give him more character, more interaction with our regular leads." ("Writer's Notebook: D.C. Fontana", TOS Season 2 DVD & Blu-ray special features)
Apollo was played by actor Michael Forest. This portrayal varied from how Apollo has usually been depicted in mythological and artistic tradition, since the character is normally golden haired. The original casting choice for the role, Jon Voight is indeed blonde-haired.
Roman gods (which were based on Greek counterparts) also appear on planet 892-IV, yet it is unknown if Apollo and his compatriots visited this world as well or if the similarity is due to some other reason. Captain Kirk also shows little reaction to the Roman Gods when he learns of them, even though he had already met Apollo by that point. (TOS: "Bread and Circuses", "Who Mourns for Adonais?")
In the credits for Star Trek Beyond, what appears to be Apollo's "giant green hand" can been seen floating in space – a callback to Montgomery Scott's line regarding the mysterious disappearance of the USS Franklin earlier in that film.
Michael Forest reprises his role as Apollo in the first episode of the TOS fan series, "Pilgrim of Eternity".
According to the novel Being Human, Carolyn Palamas became pregnant with Apollo's child and gave birth to a daughter named Athena Palamas. Star Trek: New Frontier regular character Mark McHenry is revealed to be her descendant.
The photo comic Of Woman Born also depicts Carolyn Palamas becoming pregnant with Apollo's child, but in this version, the child is male.