Star Trek: The Original Series/YMMV

Everything About Fiction You Never Wanted to Know.
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  • Cargo Ship:
    • Kirk and the Enterprise, the only lady he truly loves. Made hilarious by one episode in which the ship's computer is programmed to call him "dear".
    • Hell, in "Elaan of Troyius" Kirk is able to single-handedly overcome a love potion just because he loved the Enterprise so much!
  • Chewing the Scenery: A Klingon in "The Trouble With Tribbles" insults the Enterprise For the Evulz, underlining the last two words of this speech with a wide-eyed stare: "I didn't mean to say that the Enterprise should be hauling garbage. I meant to say that it should be hauled away as garbage!"
  • Crowning Moment of Heartwarming - In "Amok Time" after Spock had believed he had killed his captain and friend. He went to McCoy and began readying himself for court martial, but just as he began giving McCoy orders to turn the ship over to Scotty, Kirk walked in behind him, snarking, "Don't you think you'd better check with me first?" Spock grabbed his friend by the shoulders, whirled him around, let loose with a beaming smile and cried, "Jim!" At which point every viewer watching squeed. Oh for... Here. First minute or so.
  • Ear Worm: The fight music of "Amok Time", which has been spoofed in The Cable Guy, Futurama and The Simpsons. Dun-Dun-DUN-DUN-DUN-DUN-DUN-DUN-Dun-Dun-DUN-DUN...
  • Ensemble Darkhorse: Hikaru Sulu's popularity has gone way up in recent years, in no small part due to George Takei's newfound prominence as a civil rights activist. Having an insane number of followers on Facebook and Twitter doesn't hurt either.
  • Fair for Its Day:
    • Uhura: Although now it seems normal and unremarkable for a woman to have a job other than a secretary, back then Uhura being in a (almost military) job and being black was a huge leap forward.
      • Not only that, even when she primarily served as The Chick, casting a black woman in the role was a huge deal in the 1960s. And novels written as early as the '70s indicate that Uhura was far more than a glorified switchboard operator -- she is in fact a linguistic genius who can leave Kirk's head spinning with language theory.
    • Sulu: Not to the same degree as Uhura, but it does not seem particularly notable or progressive today to have an Asian supporting character while all the leads were white. However, in the 1960s, it was a pretty big deal that Sulu had no accent, did not do martial arts, and overall was not an offensive stereotype of Asians. Just about every Asian-American actor was clamoring for the role as a result.
      • Of course, martial arts did eventually creep into Sulu's character by the third movie, and one animated series episode has a slightly uncomfortable joke about Asian racial stereotypes.
  • Fanon
    • Trelane was a member of the Q Continuum. Or, indeed, possibly even the same Q who later encounters Picard...
    • Confirmed by Peter David in his TNG novel Q Squared. Though, as it turns out, Trelane is actually Q's son. However, this also means that Kirk did technically meet Q, when Trelane's parents arrived to take him away.
    • The (technically) two seasons which compromise Star Trek the Animated Series are actually the fourth and fifth year of the five year mission mentioned in the opening credits. The animated series isn't a different show, but the same one. Except its a cartoon.
  • Fan-Preferred Couple (so very, very much so it spawned the first Slash Fic. Yep, Kirk and Spock again...)
    • Nichelle Nichols revealed in 2011 that she auditioned for Spock. Who knows how that might have changed the history of fandom itself?
  • Fight Scene Failure: Behold.
  • First Installment Wins
  • Growing the Beard: Averted by the series proper, the only Star Trek series with a strong start. Among the movies, definitely The Wrath of Khan - see also Surprisingly Improved Sequel or Even Better Sequel, depending on your view of the first.
  • Harsher in Hindsight:
    • Evil Kirk's assault of Rand during "The Enemy Within" is pretty awful in light of the fact that Grace Lee Whitney was later sexually assaulted by one of the Trek producers.
    • In the episode "Assignment: Earth", Spock lists several scenarios that Gary Seven could have been sent to effect in 1968 Earth. One of them is "an important assassination". The episode aired March 28, 1968. Martin Luther King Jr was assassinated on April 4, 1968. To twist the knife even further, Robert Kennedy's assassination occurred just two months later.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight:
    • Leonard Nimoy playing an emotionless alien might have been if Invasion of the Body Snatchers had been a bigger phenomenon than Star Trek.
    • Uhura's teasing Spock in song in "Charlie X" in light of the recent movie.
    • Spock once remarks that "the most unfortunate lack in current computer programming is that there is nothing available to immediately replace the starship surgeon."
    • In the rejected first pilot episode, Captain Pike, Kirk's predecessor, annoyed with his crewmates, says, "What are we running here, a cadet ship?"
  • Ho Yay: Spock had so much of this with Captain Kirk that entire web shows and essays have been devoted to it, and it spawned Slash Fic as a genre. But his Slap Slap Kiss with Dr. McCoy shouldn't be ignored...
  • Iron Woobie - Spock is perfectly willing to sacrifice himself for others. He will also stand by his principles even when he expects that Kirk, McCoy, or his parents will hate him for it.
  • Large Ham (William Shatner's Kirk is legendary... for the... oddly placed... pauses... and emphasis... in his sentences. Although like most things, this was heavily exaggerated by people trying to make fun of him. This style is actually most notable when he is being possessed and/or imitated by another person. For the most part he gave Kirk a subtle, sly, devil-may-care attitude that made the character famous in the first place.)
  • Narm (Some aspects of the show have aged horribly, especially for people born after 1990; as a result, this trope ends up popping up in places where it's obvious that wasn't the intent at all. Of course, a lot of people don't see this as a bad thing, as noted directly below.)
  • Narm Charm - To the point where many fans decry the remastered episodes as losing much of what made the show memorable to begin with.
  • Nightmare Fuel
    • The still image of Balok's puppet in the end credits.
    • Charlie X removing a girl's face (along, it is implied, with those of other crew members) leaving the now blind, featureless girl to claw at the wall - at least until she dies of asphyxiation.
  • Relationship Writing Fumble: If Kirk and Spock weren't intended to be in love with each other from day one, Star Trek is guilty of quite possibly the greatest RWF in television history.
  • Seasonal Rot:
    • As the show went on, the missions just kept getting weirder and weirder. Prime examples include looking for Spock's brain, a showdown at the O.K. Corral and encounters with hippies, Chicago Gangsters, Native Americans, a modern day Roman Empire, Nazis, Abraham Lincoln and even the Greek god Apollo.
    • In fact, the episode "Spock's Brain" is usually regarded as the absolute worst episode in at least the original series and sometimes in the whole of Star Trek.
    • Given a Lampshade Hanging in some of Kirk's in-universe biographies, which typically note that many of Kirk's reports were met with considerable disbelief from his superiors in Starfleet. The case where an alien race literally stole Spock's brain is usually mentioned in an especially disdainful manner.
  • Seinfeld Is Unfunny - Fwoof. TOS catches it bad these days. Not only has everyone who followed in its footsteps borrowed from it to some degree, but they've all tried to improve upon a lot of the problems the show had due to a limited budget, technological barriers of the time and the fact that the cast and crew were inventing a lot of tropes as they went. Fans who got into Trek with the newer installments can have trouble watching TOS nowadays.
  • So Bad It's Good - The third season.
  • Special Effects Failure - So many monsters... and the space-dog that is clearly a dog.
  • Stoic Woobie - Spock definitely falls into this catagory. He's an alien to two races, and several times he is injured in the line of duty, or stands by his principles under severe criticism. A few episodes that highlight this are Journey to Babel, Operation: Annihilate, and the Tholian Web.
  • Took The Bad Episode Seriously: DeForest Kelley, an old-school character actor, made a living out of doing this, and carries on with it throughout the series, with aplomb. Contrast William Shatner and especially Leonard Nimoy, both of whom visibly stop trying whenever the writing is particularly sub-par.
  • Unfortunate Implications:
    • TOS features one of the few instances of the franchise boldly going into this territory, in "The Paradise Syndrome". Kirk loses his memory, goes native on the Planet Of The Week and falls for the Girl of the Week - in this case, the natives being translocated descendants of Native Americans. Yes, that's right, Trek featuring a "mighty white man conquering the beautiful, suggestible native woman" story. (The natives even straight-up mistake Kirk for a god. Yep.) It was barely acceptable when it aired, and these days is almost universally seen as an embarrassment and one of TOS' lowest points. (This was a third season episode, natch.)
    • Not to mention the show's open sexism. In one episode the effects of a Negative Space Wedgie causes members of the crew to start passing out, Kirk orders them given booster shots. McCoy is later shown injecting a line of Starfleet personnel -- who are all female. Presumably tough spacemen are not in the habit of swooning. To the point of the Bridge Bunnies wearing incredibly short skirts and generally having menial, unimportant roles except as background characters or the Captain's Girl of the Week.
      • Although keep in mind that at the time, the miniskirt was a symbol of feminine empowerment. Yes, the short skirts were in the show as Fan Service, but that isn't the only purpose they served.
    • Another example was Wolf in the Fold, which involved the spirit of Jack the Ripper feeding on peoples' fear. How is that sexist? Because the spirit overwhelmingly preyed on women, and Spock explicitly stated that this was because women feel fear more strongly and easily than men. (If you look carefully, the female crewmember in the foreground looks distinctly unimpressed when the line is read...)
    • Perhaps the worst of all is "Turnabout Intruder," which reveals that Roddenberry's vision of an ideal, utopian future (and Roddenberry himself came up with this story, mind you) includes women being legally barred from becoming starship captains. This one was such an embarrassment to latter-day Trek that an episode of Enterprise casually revealed that Starfleet did allow women to be captains, implying that Janice Lester's phychotic mind imagined that bit of oppression.
  • The Woobie - Apollo in Who Mourns for Adonais.
  • What Could Have Been: Nichelle Nichols revealed in 2011 that she auditioned for Spock. If she had gotten THAT part, the show's Kirk-Spock-McCoy dynamic would have changed and would have unforeseen ramifications for the careers of: -Leonard Nimoy (the actual Spock), Kirstie Alley, Robin Curtis (the two actresses who played Saavik in the 2nd/3rd/4th films), Kim Cattrall (Lt. Valeris in Star Trek VI), Tim Russ (Lt. Tuvok in Star Trek: Voyager), Jolene Blalock (T'Pol on Star Trek: Enterprise) and perhaps Zachary Quinto, who already had a part on NBC's show "Heroes" and may not have appeared in the 2009 Star Trek film at all.