The Man Trap

brown wooden mouse trap with cheese bait on top

Photo by Skitterphoto on Pexels.com

I went to the gym again today and last Thursday. I didn’t meet my target of ten times in June but at least I went six times!

On Thursday, whilst on the treadmill, I watched The Man Trap. It is a far more Trek-like Star Trek episode than The Cage.

We have all the main characters apart from Scotty. No Chekhov either but that character wasn’t on the show yet. We have the familiar colourful uniforms. And we have crew members being killed by the monster of the week. Although none of them were wearing red.

The captain’s logs are used strangely in this episode. Kirk gives information from the future:

Captain’s log, additional entry. Since our mission was routine, we had beamed down to the planet without suspicion. We were totally unaware that each member of the landing party was seeing a different woman, a different Nancy Crater.

I believe this type of thing is done in later episodes but it still struck me as odd. Especially as Crewman Darnell was dead before he had a chance to report what he had seen.

I like the creature in this episode. I think that it still stands up pretty well. As Seven would say: ‘Crude but effective.’

aerial photography of green grass land under blue sky and white clouds

Photo by Mike on Pexels.com

One thing about TOS that always bugs me is the treatment of women. The uniforms for one thing. They look nice for a night out but are silly for a military uniform. Starfleet is a military I don’t care what Gene says. In this episode I did see women in trousers. Run for the hills it is the end of civilisation! I wish they had gone with that. Although, with the presence of both, it could be argued that women can choose.

More troubling though is the way male crewmen react to women. They talk like young men without a sense of decorum. A crewman looks at Yeoman Rand and says: ‘Yeah, how’d you like to have her as your own personal yeoman.’ 

I know I am putting 2018 thinking into a 1960s show but Star Trek is, or at least it likes to think it is, a progressive show. And it is odd how much sexism there is in it. In some ways TNG went too far in the other direction. In that show the characters can be arrogant about how far humans have come. It makes me wonder how bad it was for women back in the 1960s – and makes me hope that things have improved.

Overall this was a nice introduction to the series. A creature roaming the ship and killing the crew seems, at least to me, very Star Trek. Star Trek didn’t get the reputation for lots of dead crewmen for nothing.

***

I just wanted to say that I have checked this post. I really have. Unfortunately my particular combination of dyslexia and dyspraxia makes it really hard for me to spot typos. Please enjoy and I’ll try not to make too many errors.

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