[TOS] Patterns of Force

[TOS] Season 2, Episode 21 (Netflix: S2 E21):  Patterns of Force

Patterns of Force

Rating: 2

I guess there were some Nazi costumes laying around so this episode happened. It’s kind of a shame, because there’s a kernel of an interesting idea that doesn’t show up ’till the end. If they would have dropped the Nazi stuff and built the episode around the ex-federation guy that interferes with a pre-warp civilization to try and make it into his own ideal society there could have been some interesting ideas to explore.

Read more at Memory Alpha

Notes:

Kirk and Spock beam down to a planet and find some Nazis

Kirk and Spock beam down to a planet and find some Nazis, of course.

Spock steals a uniform, and then what do you know, someone comes by that's just about Kirk's size

Spock steals a uniform, and then what do you know, someone comes by that’s just about Kirk’s size

but they get captured

but they get captured

They plan a way of breaking free. You just have to take a little thing in their arm, and this bent piece of metal...

They plan a way of breaking free. You just have to take a little thing in their arm, and this bent piece of metal…

...and turn the light bulb into a laser. duh why didn't you think of that

…and turn the light bulb into a laser. duh why didn’t you think of that

They meet up with a lady and she sneaks them into an event to see the fuhrer by them pretending to be her film crew. Hey, is this Inglorious Basterds?

They meet up with a lady and she sneaks them into an event to see the fuhrer by them pretending to be her film crew. Hey, is this Inglorious Basterds?

Bones joins them!

Bones joins them!

Their leader is a federation guy that decided to interfere. He thought the Nazis were the most efficient society in earths history. Ehh, not really. They tell us that the moral of the story is that the Nazis system wasn't just bad because of all the racism and genocide, their leadership mentality sets up for corruption

Their leader is a federation guy that decided to interfere. He thought the Nazis were the most efficient society in earth’s history. Ehh, not really. They tell us that the moral of the story is that the Nazi’s system wasn’t just bad because of all the racism and genocide, their mentality towards leadership encourages corruption.

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  • John Christensen

    They get caught so many times. Kirk and Spock keep going under cover, and get caught 4 or 5 times. You think they would stop trying to disguise themselves. I did like that they gave a nod to the great “Inglorious Bastards”. So nice of them.

    • http://www.letswatchstartrek.com/ Lets Watch Star Trek

      Yeah, by the end of the episode the streets are probably littered with Nazis laying around in their underwear

  • CarlS

    They raided the wardrobe department and shot everything in the back lot again. One week it’s 20s gangster outfits, the next it’s Roman garb.

  • julian

    I strongly dislike the depiction of Nazi-Germany.

    So the Zeons are the Jews? Yet they seem like some underground organization wanting to bring down the Nazis. They are not treated as victims. They infiltrate the Nazi-organizations to assasinate the Führer, matching the image Nazis tried to spread of Jews. The oppression against Zeons is hardly shown. It seems like they were about to kill them, but didn`t so far, and when their real Führer tells them not to they are ready to form a multicultural society? It`s not that racism is one flaw in an otherwise benevolent and efficient system. It`s a core element of the Nazis world view. The policies and mindset of actual Nazis had “antisemitic” written all over them, even before the “final solution”. The writers could not have ignored that Antisemitism in Germany did not stop on May 8th, there were synagogues burning after the war, too.

    The next (in my opinion even worse) part is that the Führer himself is a good guy and only wanted efficiency and progress. Many Germans who had twelve years of being taught Hitler is their savior reacted to learning about the holocaust exactly like this. “It wasn`t Hitler, it was some officers, had Hitler known of this, he would not have let this happen” … no. I don`t think I have to explain Hitler was evil. This episode would reaffirm these dangerous myths, and it wasn`t aired in Germany until 1999, I understand why.

    It is great a topic like Nazi ideology is being dealt with, but it needs to be done carefully. This is a showcasing of uniforms while being just one step away from saying “Hitler wasn`t that bad”.
    This show often gives us some kind of message for our time, especially when Spock comments on 20th century earth. What is the message here? Let`s be Nazis but without the death-camp-thingies?

    • julian

      They do say the leader principle is bad, but still it seems like “Sieg Heil” is seen as the answer to many problems.