5 scholars who got it wrong on Star Trek the Original Series,
are listed in order of significance of their consequences. These bright people had great dreams, ideas, and plans that unfolded in disaster. Each of these mistakes had to be personally reversed by the crew of the Enterprise. They consist of historians, humanitarians, doctors, and Nobel prize winners. Sometimes, the best ideas are best never spoken or acted upon.
Number 1: Edith Keeler from “The City on the Edge of Forever”
The plan: World Peace
The consequences: Momentary non-existence of the Enterprise. The loss of one homeless man no one missed.
Humanitarian, Edith Keeler, preaches visions of space exploration and peace. Gaining political influence, she seeks an audience with the U.S. President keeping America away from the distraction, otherwise known as the Second World War. Her plan comes with a small, inconvenient price with Nazi Germany conquering the world with several million more victims who otherwise would not have suffered before. Although Kirk and Spock praise her convictions as being right all the long, we can’t help to notice they wronging her right and letting her step in front of a truck. Edith’s hard work is erased as if it never happened.
Number 2: Dr. Roger Korby from “What are Little Girls Made of?”
The plan: Galactic control of humanity by replacing the living with androids.
The consequences: A few good men in red shirts.
A recluse living deep in the icy caverns of Exo III, an expert of archeological medicine, Dr. Korby, plans his comeback with help of androids. He has much to say when the Enterprise comes to find him. However, his lips are sealed. He offers gifts to the galaxy, but like a parent a day before Christmas, he will not reveal his secrets. Dr. Korby found a way to eliminate war, famine, and disease. However, his cure is very controversial requiring mechanical clones to reach upper echelons of power before revealing themselves. Only when they control the Federation will they let their subjects know who masters them. Captain Kirk, fortunately, ends this dream single handed. Some would argue, it really wasn’t the work of Dr. Korby’s but of his android clone. However, we counter it was Korby’s ideas that survived. For that, we give the blame it deserves.
Number 3: Dr. Richard Daystrom from “The Ultimate Computer”
The plan: Computers to command Starships.
The consequences: Hundreds killed, including the entire crew on the U.S.S. Excalibur. The loss of the unmanned ore ship, the Woden.
Nobel prize winner, Dr. Daystrom, invents a new thinking computer, the M-5, destined to replace human crew on ships. Unfortunately, it takes itself too seriously and turns out to be an energy hog and not eco-friendly. Daystrom had many ulterior motives other than unmanned space exploration. He wanted to get back at skeptics who laughed at him as boy genius. His invention carried his angst and its desire to defend itself against bullies by destroying them. Kirk pulls the plug on the M-5 and Dr. Daystrom heads for the mental ward.
Number 4: Lt. Marla McGivers from “Space Seed”
The plan: Get in good with fallen dictator, Khan.
The consequences: All those who suffered and died in Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan
Historian, Lt. Marla McGivers, chooses the wrong horse with her reckless infatuation of Khan Noonien Singh. Soon after the exiled tyrant awakens from his long slumber, she volunteers in a failed attempt to take over the ship. Captain Kirk was forgiving and banishes McGivers, Khan, and his crew to a doomed planet that will experience epic climate change six months later. McGivers will suffer an agonizing death while Khan will fuel his hatred of Kirk twenty years later. Many will suffer, including Mr. Spock. Perhaps, if there wasn’t a Lt. McGivers at all to make such a mistake, Khan would have been left to the freezer.
Number 5: John Gill from “Patterns of Force”
The goal: One-party social order with free health care.
The consequences: Loss of liberty, all mobile calls monitored, opposition mocked on social media.
Historian John Gill visits the planet Ekos. Unsupervised by the Federation, he introduces the culture to National Socialism, in the vision of Germany circa 1939. What ensues is catastrophe with interplanetary holocaust. The evil of World War II resurfaces with John Gill’s arrogance and utter stupidity complete with a fascist state, executions, bigotry, paranoia, and war. The Enterprise foils the “final solution” by encouraging a coup d’etat leaving the planet with little leadership. The aftermath would no doubt be civil war, famine, and the collapse of the economies across two planets. Professor Gill, no doubt, gets the prize for making the biggest mistake in galactic history.