Memory Alpha
Memory Alpha
Real world article
(written from a Production point of view)

It's a comedy of manners when Spock has a personal visit in the middle of Spock and Captain Pike's crucial negotiations with an unusual alien species.



Battle of the Spocks

Human and Vulcan Spock

On Vulcan, Spock arrives at the ritual site of his family for the koon-ut-kal-if-fee, where his betrothed T'Pring and a number of other Vulcans await. He takes the mallet and strikes the ritual gong, and the bell-ringers begin their ringing. The mistress of ceremonies beckons T'Pring forward, but as Spock approaches, T'Pring notes his ears. Spock now appears fully Human, with rounded ears, and is wearing his Starfleet uniform. T'Pring declares she will not marry a Human, and invokes the kal-if-fee, the ritual duel to the death. As two weapon-bearers come forward carrying lirpa, Spock asks who he will fight. T'Pring points to another Vulcan in the crowd – Spock again, with fully Vulcan features. The Human-appearing Spock protests that fighting oneself was illogical, but quickly takes up the lirpa as his Vulcan self slashes at him with it. The Vulcan Spock quickly disarms his Human self, and sneeringly asks what he would know of logic; he was only Human, ruled by emotion. The Human Spock looks fearful as the Vulcan Spock raises his lirpa for the killing blow…

…just as Spock awakens. He is in his quarters aboard the USS Enterprise, and he is alone. He goes to the mirror near his bed to confirm that his ears are still pointed, and feels them for himself just to be sure.

"Science officer's log, stardate 2341.4. After our harrowing encounter with the Gorn, Enterprise has returned to Starbase 1, one of the oldest, most venerated space stations in the Federation, newly repaired after the Klingon War. Here, the crew will be adjourning for some much-needed rest and relaxation. While I have agreed to assist the captain with a diplomatic matter, I plan to spend most of my time here with my fiancée T'Pring, who has arranged to join me since our last visit was cut short by…"

In the midst of his log entry, Spock is interrupted by the chime at his door. It is T'Pring, who greets him in the formal manner, "parted from me but never parted, never and always touching and touched", meeting at the appointed place. Spock gives the formal answer, before kissing her. T'Pring casts a critical eye around the room, saying that it looked very Human, and she found it hard to believe a Vulcan had slept there. Spock replies that these were his quarters, and he was in the process of redecorating. She withdraws her criticism until his redecorating is complete, and thanks him for arranging accomnodations for her colleague K'Tyll. Spock hopes she finds them adequate, before asking T'Pring about her presence there. T'Pring asks if he knows about her professional responsibilities, and Spock recalls that she was engaged in rehabilitating people for their crimes by showing them the true path of Vulcan logic. T'Pring explains that one such person, Barjan T'Or, has been reported in the area. Spock recalls that he had been responsible for the uprising on Kepler-22b; the Vulcan authorities had sought him for some time. Spock thinks that T'Pring has some work ahead of her, but she replies that this was the reason K'Tyll accompanied her. She reminds him that the last time they were together, it had been his duty that interrupted them, and believes they must prioritize their relationship. Spock agrees, but adds that he had some responsibilities to deal with beforehand. T'Pring, somewhat cold now, answers that she expected nothing less. He thinks her disappointed, but she says she is realistic. He assures her he will be free to dine with her that night.

In the conference room, Captain Pike, Spock, and Cadet Uhura are being briefed by Admiral April, who shows a map display highlighting the R'ongovian Protectorate, a "small but vitally important piece of territory" between the Klingon Empire and the Romulan Star Empire. It's the fastest route to the other side of the Beta Quadrant, but without safe passage, the Federation keeps losing ships there. Pike asks why there have been no inroads made with them before, and April replies that they have been "unusually private" up to that point; that changed after a diplomatic overture by the Tellarites. Pike, with a somewhat knowing look, asks how that went. The admiral looks mildly amused as he brings up the footage of a R'ongovian getting into Tellarite ambassador Q'Ral's face, saying that his beard was as ridiculous as his proposals, and that every word was an insult to R'ongovia. "Wow. And here I thought the Tellarites were rude," Pike observes. April muses that Q'Ral said the wrong thing, but they didn't have time to speculate. The R'ongovians had opened negotiations with the Klingons, and the Romulans were not far behind; time was not on their side. Pike is confident they can handle negotiations with more grace than the Tellarites – which is good, April notes, because they were meeting with the R'ongovian delegation the following day. The R'ongovian representative would be the one who had met with Q'Ral, Vasso L'Gaelia, captain of the R'ongovian flagship, which was docked to the station. Uhura recognizes the ship as a solar sailship, which April explains was brought out for ceremonial occasions; whenever the R'ongovians sign a treaty, they fly their new allies' flag in tribute.

Vasso L'Gaelia

Captain Vasso L'Gaelia

Further discussion is interrupted by La'an, who reports a problem: The R'ongovian delegation has arrived already, and are demanding to speak to Pike immediately. Pike has her show them in, and their spokesman begins by saying they have been sitting and waiting on their ship while the Federation officers discuss the upcoming negotiations. April recognizes him as Captain Vasso. When the admiral identifies himself, Vasso bluntly states he will only speak to Captain Pike. The captain identifies himself, and tries to break the tension by saying if he had known the delegates were coming early, he would have cooked them up an Earth specialty. Vasso laughs, and appears glad to meet the captain, formally identifying himself and his first officer Brax. Pike introduces Spock, Uhura, and La'an, the latter of whom leaves to attend to the "security things". Brax sees Spock as a Vulcan, famous for logic, and believes he has a voice in the Federation's governance. Spock replies that all Federation members have a voice in its governance, something the R'ongovian finds "confusing", to which an amused Pike agrees. When Vasso asks how they determine who is in control, Pike explains that this is determined by a vote, an effort to listen to all their members' voices. The R'ongovians, too, are listeners, as empathy is a strong part of their society, something few people understand. Clapping Pike on the shoulder, Vasso chooses to get started with the negotiations.

Meanwhile, Lieutenant Ortegas and Nurse Chapel arrive in sickbay, looking for Dr. M'Benga, telling him that they were ready to go for shore leave. While they are in casual clothes, the doctor is still in uniform, surprised that it was time already. He has been collecting data to share with his colleague Dr. Berroa, an expert in noninvasive surgical techniques, who has come all the way from the other side of the quadrant to meet him. Meanwhile, Ortegas asks about a Lieutenant Dever whom Chapel has been involved with, asking if she should keep a communicator open or rely on hand signals. Chapel replies there was no need; the thing she liked about Dever was how they were on the same page, the "casual, no attachments, this is just for fun, zero committments" page, as she puts it. Ortegas notes this was more of a book than a page, and reminds Chapel that she had said the same thing about a woman on Argelius II, something Chapel calls a misunderstanding, as it was only one time. Ortegas corrects it to be "one very entertaining time", to which Chapel asks how being chased by live phaser fire could be fun. M'Benga steps out, fully packed and still in uniform, but with a hat adorned with fishing lures; M'Benga plans to go fly fishing, having heard the biospheres on the starbase had everything.

In the transporter room, Una and La'an are supervising the departing crew. Ortegas tells La'an she didn't have to check them out in person, but La'an believes it was the only way to make sure it was done right, before remarking on M'Benga's "nice hat". M'Benga sighs and takes it off, before asking what La'an and Una had planned for shore leave. Ortegas jokingly answers that they don't "shore leave", they "shore stay". M'Benga begins chuckling about "the nickname", but backtracks when he sees both Ortegas and Chapel negatively shaking their heads, saying he didn't know what he was saying, and asks Chief Kyle to energize. Una pointedly asks about the nickname, but when the doctor hems and haws, Ortegas admits that the yeomen often called Una "where fun goes to die"; she tries to pass it off with a joke, saying if they knew any better, they wouldn't be yeomen. Una brusquely orders Kyle to energize. After he does so, she asks if he has heard this, and he suspiciously denies it. A glance at La'an only earns a shake of the head.

Spock returns to his quarters, apologizing to T'Pring about the unexpected start of the negotiations. While she does not doubt his duty's importance, she reminds him they had agreed that this time would be for them, and that she had set aside important work of her own so they could meet. She believes that mutual sacrifice was crucial to a successful relationship, and Spock agrees it was indisputable. She worries that his Starfleet service makes him behave like a Human, and would make them incompatable. She tells him that perhaps he should prepare for his "important work", and brusquely leaves. Spock looks over to see the meal prepared, and bows his head.

Act One[]

In Starbase 1's lounge, Chapel is meeting with Lieutenant Dever. She thinks they don't have to stay and talk, and go and "have fun". Dever, however, seems to have something on his mind, wondering where their relationship was going. He wonders if she should transfer to his ship, the USS Skylark, or if he should transfer to the Enterprise. She suddenly sees Spock sitting in the lounge alone, and says abruptly that she needs to check on her friend and would speak to Dever later.

Back on the ship, La'an asks why Una allows the whole nickname business to bother her. Una denies that it bothered her; if anything, she was more bothered by the fact she never knew about it before. She asks if La'an did, and not only did the security chief not know, she didn't care, either. Una is concerned that her not knowing makes her feel "out of touch", given that as a senior officer she wasn't exactly part of the crew. La'an corrects her by saying that it wasn't because she was a senior officer, but that she terrified people, meaning it as a compliment. La'an sees no issue with liking work, and likes the quiet of the ship after the crew clears out for shore leave. Una admits she had been looking forward to redoing the duty roster, while La'an's choice of activity was checking the power supplies of the phasers in the armory. Suddenly, the computer alerts La'an to a security breach in airlock four. La'an acknowledges and asks who was on backup duty, but Una belays that, saying that she would be La'an's backup. "People are idiots," an incredulous La'an says. "You're fun." Una and La'an reach the airlock, phasers drawn. La'an opens the airlock, and inside they discover two people, a Human and a Bolian, wearing Starfleet environmental suits. They both raise their hands, the Human pleading for them not to shoot – they were Ensigns Christina and Zier, members of the crew.

In the lounge, Chapel is seated across from Spock, saying that she considers him a highly intelligent person, but at the same time she also felt he was an idiot. He had told T'Pring he would be "home in time for dinner", and then he wasn't. He admits he found himself in an impossible circumstance, but as he continues to explain, Chapel gives him a slap upside the head, which she explains is "designed to break old habits". She believes he should have put T'Pring over his duties, as a relationship was mutual sacrifice – which is, she admits, why she tries to avoid them. Spock admits his worry that T'Pring thinks him incompatable because he is half-Human, and explains the dream he had the previous evening about his Human and Vulcan halves fighting each other. Being raised on Vulcan and among Vulcans, his Human ancestry was often used to isolate him. He had found a bond with his pet sehlat, I-Chaya; Chapel had a similar pet in her childhood, a Malamute named Milo, who "may or may not" have bitten a girl who had called Chapel stupid. If his concern is that T'Pring is critical because he is half-Human, Chapel suggests that he show T'Pring that he understands her as a Vulcan. Spock thanks her for her advice, and offers the same if she needs it. "What are friends for?" Chapel replies. When Spock does not appear to understand the Human phrase, she explains it was a rhetorical question. But Spock replies that he knows, noting that Humans were just as easy to tease as Vulcans, earning a smile from Chapel.

In his quarters, Spock has suggested a "soul sharing" with T'Pring; it is clear that he does not understand her as well as he should. In this way, he would be privy to her innermost thoughts, and she to his. He asks if she consents, and she agrees. They kneel on cushions on the floor across from one another, speaking the ritual words in Vulcan, one of their hands reaching to the other in the traditional Vulcan display of affection, the other palm-to-palm. As their palms meet, all of the candles in the room go out. However, both immediately realize something is wrong, as T'Pring seems to call to herself, and Spock likewise to himself. They look at their reflections in the viewports looking to space, and realize they have switched bodies. T'Pring, in Spock's body, asks if it can be reversed; Spock, in T'Pring's, replies he does not know.

Act Two[]

Pike is dressed for shore leave, the negotiations apparently successful, when he is visited by April; the admiral has bad news for him. The R'ongovians are cancelling further negotiations, saying that "a connection wasn't made", whatever that meant. Pike is honestly baffled by the revelation, remarking on how their meeting had gone. April agrees, saying if that was a bad diplomatic meeting, he wouldn't know what a good one would look like. Pike wants to get them back into a room to talk, but April stops him short, saying that the R'ongovians didn't want to talk to him anymore. A confused Pike asks who they did wish to speak to.

The body-swapped Spock and T'Pring have been working for hours with various meditations and chants to reverse their change of bodies, but to no avail. Spock-in-T'Pring has one more chant to try, which would require a gong. Just then, the door chimes. As these were Spock's quarters, it would have to appear that Spock is answering it. T'Pring-in-Spock thinks they will just go away eventually, but the best way for them to go away was for Spock to appear to answer it. T'Pring-in-Spock thinks it sounds like "hijinks" and dislikes the idea, which Spock-in-T'Pring concurs with, but in this case, "hijinks" would be the most logical course of action. T'Pring-in-Spock answers, revealing Captain Pike. He explains that the R'ongovians only want to meet with Spock. While T'Pring-in-Spock attempts to deflect the idea, Pike is adamant that Spock is now the only person who can keep the R'ongovians from allying with either the Klingons or the Romulans, or even both. Both realize they had to tell the truth, and explain to Pike that they had switched bodies and had no idea how to reverse it. At first disbelieving, Pike clearly understands the problem, but his is equally bad: The R'ongovians will not meet with anyone other than Spock… or at least, someone who looks like him. Spock-in-T'Pring does not wish to put her through that, but T'Pring-in-Spock agrees to do it, pointing out that the purpose of their efforts was to understand one another, and this seemed an opportune way to do so. Meanwhile, Spock-in-T'Pring would remain behind to try and reverse the ritual.

Meanwhile, Una and La'an arrive to interview the two ensigns they caught in the airlock. La'an quickly calls "bad cop", much to Una's chagrin; La'an smugly replies that she had to be quicker. La'an is seated across from Christina, asking if she knew what kind of trouble she was in. When Christina says she doesn't, La'an threateningly tells her to start talking, or the next time she did would be at her court martial. Meanwhile, Una is all smiles and understanding with Zier, saying she had been an ensign too once, and it was alright to be nervous. Zier says she didn't want to get into trouble, and Una assures her she wouldn't be, asking if she wanted coffee. Both ensigns admit – Christina crying, Zier laughing – that they were playing "Enterprise bingo", and were about to reach their last square, "sign the Scorch", when they were caught in the airlock. Afterwards, both ensigns are seated before both Una and La'an. Una has heard their explanations, but admonishes them for acting in an irresponsible manner ("very", La'an emphasizes). She is forced to revoke their shore leave and assigns them to micro-clean the transporter pads under the supervision of Chief Kyle, much to the horror of both ensigns, who consider the transporter chief "mean". After dismissing them, Una looks to La'an and asks incredulously, "What the hell is 'Enterprise bingo?!" La'an has no better idea than she does.

Meanwhile, Spock-in-T'Pring receives a message. It is K'Tyll, who explains that the rendezvous with Barjan T'Or has had an unexpected development. Barjan is refusing to meet with K'Tyll, and only wishes to meet with T'Pring. Spock-in-T'Pring tries to avoid it (rightly saying that T'Pring was not feeling like herself), but as Pike had been about the R'ongovians, K'Tyll is adamant: Only T'Pring can accomplish their mission.

Act Three[]

Enterprise bingo

Enterprise Bingo challenges

Alone in the crew lounge, Una and La'an discover the origins of "Enterprise bingo", almost exclusively played by the ensigns and the enlisted crewmen. In order to achieve bingo, they must complete a series of tasks. La'an shows Una the list, which includes items such as setting the universal translator to the Andorian language, sitting in the captain's chair, and lastly, "sign the Scorch". La'an found the list in Zier's quarters during a "routine inspection". Una thinks that if this is what passes for fun, she is happy to be "fun's funeral" (to which La'an corrects her with "where fun goes to die"). Una confesses she doesn't understand it… so La'an suggests maybe they try to understand it, to get a better understanding of the crew.

They begin with the first item on the list, using the transporter to reflavor chewing gum. In sickbay, La'an chews her gum until the flavor is gone, and Una activates the transporter. When La'an beams back in, the spearmint flavor is back in her gum. Next is the "turbolift two deck shout" challenge, where they call out their deck at the same time. La'an calls to the bridge, Una to engineering; the turbolift hears engineering. Next is the "phaser stun duel". They set their phasers to the lowest setting, but as they raise their weapons to aim and fire, Una suddenly says to wait, but La'an fires, hitting Una in the shoulder. A somewhat stricken-looking La'an asks if they were having fun yet.

Chapel and Ortegas are walking through one of the biospheres, where the navigator asks about Chapel and Dever. Chapel did not tell him about her feelings, worried he would want to "get serious", and he had tried to read her some of his poetry, which she judges as "oddly, not terrible". They suddenly spot T'Pring, who Ortegas notes looks "pissed". Chapel admits that she had tried to give Spock some relationship advice. Ortegas warns about getting into the middle of a Vulcan relationship, as they would hit her with a lirpa; Ortegas has actual scars from the Vulcan weapon to prove her point. T'Pring approaches and asks to speak with Chapel alone. A moment later, seated alone under a tree, Chapel is told what happened, and she can't help but laugh; she did not think Spock would have taken her advice that far. Spock-in-T'Pring confesses he had not taken the time to consider the feeling of being inside his fiancée's body, and notes it was "different". He is now concerned that he may endanger T'Pring's career, just as T'Pring in his body is working to save his, and wonders if there was a medical solution. Chapel thinks there may be, but it would take time; meanwhile, Spock now had a "relationship opportunity". Spock-in-T'Pring asks if that meant he should attempt to do T'Pring's job, and Chapel points out that T'Pring was doing his, so why not help her out and use some of that Vulcan logic she values? Spock-in-T'Pring sees this as coming "dangerously close to hijinks". "Hey, who doesn't love hijinks?" Chapel replies cheerfully.

Back aboard the ship, Una and La'an admit they were not feeling the allure that the rest of the crew did (though Una pointedly notes that she felt it when La'an shot her with a phaser), but Una insists on finishing the list. While it had been La'an's idea, she wondered how much more insight into the crew they needed. Una asks what the point of "Enterprise bingo" was. La'an thinks it a way to blow off steam, but Una believes it was meant as a way to break the rules.

The negotiations with the R'ongovians do not seem to be going well, as T'Pring-in-Spock points out the Klingon history of cultural domination, which Vasso dismisses as an inadequate reason to side with the Federation. Noting the formal, somewhat mechanical nature of the discussions, Pike – watching from the sidelines – wonders if the R'ongovians have suddenly gone "Vulcan-y"; April shushes him, as they were supposed to just be observers. T'Pring-in-Spock asks about the logic of allying with a culture whose central purpose was subjugating other cultures to its own, to which Vasso retorts by asking about the logic of allying with the Federation, whose interdependence dilutes the cultures that comprise it. Pike looks like he wants to intervene, but April assures him Spock can handle it. As a Vulcan, T'Pring-in-Spock sympathizes with the R'ongovians' fears that they would lose their culture to homogenization in a multilateral alliance like the Federation, and sometimes wishes to return to Vulcan rather than focus on Starfleet. Despite April's protests, Pike rises to speak, saying that he was not speaking on behalf of the Federation, but rather on behalf of Spock. Vasso elects to allow it. Pike calls Spock's decision to serve in Starfleet a "noble sacrifice", spending so much time away from his home and culture. He compliments Spock's commitment to the Federation and to understanding the values and plights of wildly different cultures, even at great personal cost. Pike also finds his striving for intellectual excellence and his commitment to the spirit of duty inspirational. To answer Vasso's question about why they should ally with the Federation, Pike tells him to simply look across the table, and that he considered Spock to be everything that was great about Starfleet. He apologizes for interrupting, before quietly saying to T'Pring-in-Spock that he should never have put her in this position. Before leaving, Vasso expresses his admiration for Pike defending a member of his crew, and elects to conclude the meeting there, but will offer a summation before returning to R'ongovia. As April looks over at Pike, the captain is forced to shrug; he has no idea where it will go from there, either.

Act Four[]

While most of the crew are enjoying themselves on leave (including M'Benga, now dressed for his fly fishing), Spock-in-T'Pring elects to bring Chapel along for the meeting with Barjan, who is seated at a three-dimensional chess table. Barjan emphasizes he only wished to meet with T'Pring alone, but given that he was v'tosh ka'tur, Spock-in-T'Pring did not think he would object to a Human being along. Barjan wonders how El-Keshtanktil can employ Humans in the service of logic, finding T'Pring curious among Vulcans for her tolerance of these "creatures". Spock-in-T'Pring explains that T'Pring's sympathy for those without logic was why she was there, and given his position, she would have expected him to be open-minded. Barjan counters that while it was one thing to find strength in emotion, it was another to marry a half-Human, knowing that she was betrothed to the son of Sarek, noting how she defended Vulcan ideals on the one hand and insulted them with the other. As the son of Sarek was the one in T'Pring's body, her responses become increasingly heated, as do Chapel's, who remarks that she thinks Spock twice the Vulcan he is. Barjan dismisses the Human assessment. Attempting to "stay in character", Spock-in-T'Pring asks what circumstances would warrant bringing him in for rehabilitation. Barjan says at that point, there are none. He had come fully prepared to engage in rehabilitation, but seeing the company his captor keeps, he has changed his mind. Spock-in-T'Pring suddenly knocks him out with one punch, then remarks to Chapel that perhaps they should keep that part of how they captured Barjan under wraps, as Spock considers the response "a tad too Human". Chapel thinks it just the right amount.

Afterwards, Spock and T'Pring are in sickbay, where M'Benga is administering a salve of some sort onto Spock's forehead. He remarks that all the time he spent studying medicine on Vulcan, he never had to deal with a katric transfer, calling it "exceedingly rare". Chapel is monitoring their glucose levels as well as their cortical functions. T'Pring-in-Spock asks what the "noxious paste" M'Benga is applying. It was ground up Nivallan sea urchin, nutrient-rich and water-resistant, as well as being a good match for Vulcan skin, "electromagnetically speaking". Chapel notes he has been eager to try it out, and the doctor thinks it will become a Federation standard. Cortical stimulation will mimic the original brain patterns of the host body, making it uncomfortable for any "visitors" – or as Chapel puts it, "We zap you, you switch back." M'Benga adds "theoretically", saying that the katra bridged the gap between medicine and the mind, so it was not "cut-and-dry". Emotion also played a part, which is probably what caused the transfer in the first place. Chapel nervously asks M'Benga if they were going to get nerve pinched for this, and the doctor laughingly says they probably will. Both Spock and T'Pring begin screaming after the cortical stimulation begins.

Sometime later, Spock is conscious and back in his own body again. When he calls her "Nurse Chapel", she tells him he can call her "Christine". He does, and thanks her again for her help. Chapel thinks it "no big deal", but for Spock, it was "very big indeed". She suggests he try to be more careful with what he could and could not offer from then on, and he assures her not to worry, as Vulcans could not lie… at least, not like Humans could. She clarifies that he should be honest with himself. He is left to ponder this as she leaves.

In his quarters, Spock admits to T'Pring his fears that she did not see him as being Vulcan enough for her, that he was more concerned about his duty to Starfleet than his culture, or his betrothed. He confesses his feelings about Vulcan were not easy, as he had been forced to prove his Vulcan-ness, and any deviation was seen as proof he did not belong, whereas in Starfleet he was accepted for who he was, half-Vulcan, half-Human. "I am, quite simply, Spock," he concludes. T'Pring understands how much he values duty, and her fear was that he saw their relationship as just that, a duty, rather than something more. "We must both want to be here," she says, and Spock replies that he does, as does T'Pring. They seal their commitment with a kiss.

In the conference room on Starbase 1, Uhura asks if Pike knew what he was going to say to the R'ongovians, and April adds that he hopes so. Pike jokingly asks where the drama was in that, as the R'ongovians enter. Vasso begins by asking Pike why they should choose to ally with the Federation. To the surprise of both Vasso and April, Pike replies that they shouldn't, as they shouldn't risk making the Federation's enemies into their enemies as well. They were only a few years out from the Klingon War, and the Romulans were out there biding their time. "Who knows what species we'll piss off next?" he asks, adding that they weren't really coming to them with any great respect for R'ongovian culture, as they knew barely anything about it. He admits the Federation was only interested in the R'ongovians for their territory, and asks what the R'ongovians would gain in return – hypothetical trade markets, scientific advancement, support in the event of a crisis that would likely only come because they had cast their lot with the Federation? While it was true the Federation had a lot to offer, Pike knows it comes with a price, and the R'ongovians are right to suspect that price would be higher than they could pay. Vasso brusquely thanks him, and he and Brax leave. April asks Pike what he was doing, and Pike answers he is playing a hunch. The admiral is incredulous that Pike is risking an important strategic alliance over a hunch, but Pike points out that the R'ongovians had been rude to the Tellarites, reasonable with them, and deeply logical when talking with a Vulcan. Uhura asks if Pike thought they were simply copying who they came into contact with, and the captain confirms he had at first, but wonders if it was all a diplomatic technique. They responded positively when he spoke up for Spock, even though it violated their specific request that he not be involved. He thinks they were looking for someone to take their point of view, "radical empathy" as he puts it; they admire others' capacity to see things their way. They look out to see the solar sail on the R'ongovian flagship open up… and they are flying the flag of the Federation. The alliance is made.

R'ongovian flagship, sails unfurled

The R'ongovian flagship flying the Federation's flag

Walking outside on the hull – without environment suits – Una and La'an have reached the end of their "Enterprise bingo". La'an worriedly asks Una if she was a hundred percent sure the force field will hold. Una taps the edge of the field, and jokes that she was ninety-nine percent sure at least. They reach "the Scorch" – the oldest unreplaced piece of the Enterprise's hull, where it was said to be good luck to sign it. La'an and Una affix their signatures to the Scorch, before looking up in awe to see the R'ongovian flagship flying overhead, sails deployed, and flying the flag of the Federation.

Lying in bed in Spock's quarters, T'Pring remarks that she enjoyed being "Mr. Spock" for a day, while Spock admits in the spirit of total honesty that he punched Barjan while in T'Pring's body. She concedes that having met Barjan, that was logical. As they settle in, the R'ongovian flagship flies by in view of the ship – and of the lounge on Starbase 1, where Ortegas is sitting with Chapel. Ortegas asks about Dever, and Chapel admits she told him how boring he was. Ortegas suggests she try being so honest next time she was in a relationship. Chapel worries that this would mean the relationship would be "serious", to which Ortegas wonders why that would be a problem. Chapel seems to have something on her mind, but says only "it would have to be the right guy".

Memorable quotes[]

"Never get in the middle of a Vulcan relationship. They will hit you with a lirpa. Trust me. Have you every fought with a lirpa? I have actual scars."

- Ortegas to Chapel as Spock in T'Pring's body approaches in the biosphere

"In the spirit of total honesty, I should probably tell you that I punched Barjan."
"Having met him, that is logical."

- Spock and T'Pring

Log entries[]

Background information[]


Cast and characters[]


  • In Spock's nightmare, he imagined T'Pring invoking kal-if-fee. Eight years later, she would actually do so during their wedding ritual. TOS: "Amok Time"
  • Spock's nightmare features his Human and Vulcan halves split into separate individuals. B'Elanna Torres had a similar experience in reality via Vidiian experimentation in VOY: "Faces".
  • Pike wears an updated version of the green wrap-around tunic which was also on occasion worn by James T. Kirk as an alternative to his regular Captain's uniform.
  • The R'ongovians emulate the people they come into contact with, as Pike correctly surmises by the end of the episode: they're brusque and defensive around La'an, friendly and easygoing with Pike, as well as logical and calm with Spock.
  • The V'tosh ka'tur were previously established in ENT: "Fusion".
  • Spock mentions to Chapel that he had a pet Sehlat I-Chaya, growing up. This was first mentioned in TOS: "Journey to Babel" and I-Chaya made her first appearance in TAS: "Yesteryear".
  • According to Erica Ortegas, Christine dated a gal on Argelius II (an event that ended with Chapel apparently having a phaser fired at her). This was a planet the Enterprise will visit in TOS: "Wolf in the Fold".
  • Ortegas claims to have witnessed the above event, and to have "run interference" for Chapel on other dates. As Chapel is established as being brand-new to the Enterprise in SNW: "Strange New Worlds", either the Argelius II date (and others) took place after she joined the crew, or Chapel and Ortegas are previous acquaintances.
  • Enterprise bingo was first mentioned in SNW: "Children of the Comet", though the list of tasks visible in this episode does not include the item cited by Ortegas to Uhura.
  • During their short-lived ruse with the captain, Spock (in T'Pring's body) has to force himself to refer to Pike by his first name, Chris, rather than as "Captain" and T'Pring, likewise, has to stop herself at first calling him Chris. It was previously established T'Pring is friendly enough with Pike to refer to him by his given name (SNW: "Strange New Worlds"). Spock will later become comfortable referring to his later commanding officer, James T. Kirk by his first name.


  • Gerald Fried's iconic battle music from TOS: "Amok Time" (and used in other episodes of the series as well) is featured in the nightmare.
  • A portion of the original Star Trek theme (the first few notes of the "Star Trek fanfare") is revealed to exist within the Trek universe when the pad used to keep track of "Enterprise Bingo" tasks plays them whenever one is checked off.
  • The song "I'm Looking" by the band Kings & Queens plays over the credits instead of the usual theme music.

Links and references[]



Guest starring[]


Uncredited co-stars[]


ambassador; Andorian; ape; Argelius II; beard; Berroa; Beta Quadrant; biosphere; boat; Bolian; bucket hat; Chapel's tormentor; Christmas; Constitution-class (unnamed); cultural homogenization; duty roster; El-Keshtanktil; emotion; empathy; Enterprise, USS; Enterprise bingo; evolve; Federation; Federation members; fiancée; flagship; fly-fishing; good cop/bad cop; Gorn; governance; glucose; hijinks; honesty; Human; I-Chaya; idealism; "I'm Looking"; insult; kal-if-fee; katra; katric transfer (aka body swap); Kepler-22b; Kings & Queens; Klingon; Klingon Empire; Klingon history; Klingon space; Klingon War; lirpa; listen (listening); magic; malamute; marry; matter synthesizer; medicine; membership; micro-clean; Milo; mind; multilateralism; nerve pinch; nickname; Nivallan sea urchin; nutrient; open-mindedness; phaser; pissed; pissed off; power (social); power supply; Q'Ral; quality; radical empathy; rehabilitation; rest and relaxation; ritual combat; "Roger"; Romulan; Romulan space; Romulan Star Empire; R'ongovia; R'ongovian; R'ongovian Protectorate; R'ongovian solar sailship; R'ongovian territory; rude (rudeness); rule; Sarek; scorch; sea urchin paste; sehlat; senior officer; shore leave; sign; skin; Skylark, USS; Slanikian oyster; solar sail; spacewalk; spearmint; Starbase 1; sympathy; Tellarite; tolerance (toleration); trade market; transporter pad; v'tosh ka'tur; Vulcan; Vulcan (planet); Vulcan language; Vulcan soul-sharing; water-resistant; "where fun goes to die"; yeoman

Stellar cartography references[]

81 Cancri; Aaamazzara; Acamar; Achernar; Adelphous; Ajilon; Akaali; Aldebaran; Alpha Centauri; Andoria; Aneto; Archanis; Archanis sector; Ardana; Argelius; Argus; Azati Prime; B'Moth; Ba'ku; Babel; Balduk; Barolia; Barradas; Benecia; Benzar; Beta Lankal; Beta Leonis Minoris; Beta Niobe; Beta Rigel; Beta Thoridar; Beta Zeta; Betazed; blue; Bolarus; Brestant; Briar Patch; Calder; Capella; Carraya; Celes; Chaltok; Cor Caroli; Coridan; Corvan; Deep Space Station K-7; Delta; Delta Outpost; Delta Outpost 8; Delta Outpost 9; Delta Outpost 10; Delta Outpost 11; Deneb (Kaitos); Denobula; Deneva; Dessica; Devron; Dewa; Dinasia; Doctari Alpha; Donatu; Draken; Draylax; Eden; Elas; Elora; Epsilon Ceti B; Epsilon Hydrae; Epsilon Outpost; Epsilon Outpost 1; Epsilon Outpost 2; Epsilon Outpost 3; Epsilon Outpost 4; Epsilon Outpost 5; Epsilon Outpost 6; Epsilon Outpost 7; Epsilon Outpost 8; Epsilon Outpost 9; Epsilon Outpost 11; Epsilon Outpost 12; Eridani; 'etnap Nebula; Evora; Fellebia; Galorndon Core; Gamma Eridon; Gamma Hromi; Ganalda; Gasko; Gorarth; green; H'atoria; Halee; Halka; Hromi Cluster; Hyralan; Iconia; Iccobar; Inferna Prime; Iridin; Japori; Jouret; Kaferia; Kantare; Kelfour; Khitomer; Klaestron; Korvat; Kressari system; Lorillia; Lya Station Alpha; Mab-Bu; Madena; Maluria; Manzar; Memory Alpha; Mempa; Mempa sector; Merak; Minos Korva; Miridian; Mizar; Morska; Narendra; Nausicaa; Nelvana; Nequencia; Nivalla; No'Mat; O'Ryan's Planet; Omega; Omega Leonis; Ophiucus; Organia; Orion; Outpost MZ-5; Pahvo; Paulson Nebula; Peliar Zel; Pheben; Pi³ Orionis; Planet Q; Pollux; Porathia; Preenos; Priors World; Proxima; Pyrithia; Qo'noS; Qo'noS sector; Qualor; Quam; R'ongovia; Ramatis; Rator; red; Regulus; Risa; Romulan Neutral Zone; Rura Penthe; Sauria; Septra; Setlik system; Sherman's Planet; Sigma Draconis; Sigma Iotia; Sol; Son'a; Sorna Prime; Starbase G-6; Starbase 2; Starbase 4; Starbase 9; Starbase 10; Starbase 11; Starbase 12; Starbase 18; Starbase 19; Starbase 21; Starbase 22; Starbase 23; Starbase 24; Starbase 39-Sierra; Starbase 46; Starbase 47; Starbase 88; Starbase 234; Suliban; Tagra; Tagus; Tarlac; Tau Ceti; Tellar; Tellun; Teneebia; Terix; Thalos; Tomed; Tonnata; Toroth; Tranome Sar; Trill; Troyius; Turkana; Unroth; Valakis system; Veda; Vulcan; white; Wolf 359; Xarantine; yellow; Yridia; Zibal

External links[]

Previous episode:
"Memento Mori"
Star Trek: Strange New Worlds
Season 1
Next episode:
"Lift Us Where Suffering Cannot Reach"