According to Memory Alpha's In Universe Timeline, the story sequence is:
A Private Little War : The Immunity Syndrome : Elaan of Troyius.
In the Remastered Episodes Chronology, the release sequence is
The Tholian Web : The Immunity Syndrome : And the Children Shall Lead.


Starfleet loses contact with the USS Intrepid, and Spock senses that everyone on this all-Vulcan ship has been killed. Briefly later it is discovered that there is no life in the star system Gamma 7A any more. The Enterprise investigates and runs into a giant void, where energy is being drained from the ship's systems as well as from the crew's bodies. The origin of the phenomenon turns out to be a giant single-celled organism. When probes turn out to be inefficient, Spock volunteers to take a shuttle into the "amoeba", which would be a suicide mission.

Spock suggests that the creature may be destroyed from within before the contact breaks off. Kirk takes the Enterprise into the amoeba and launches an antimatter probe. He orders to secure Spock's shuttle with a tractor beam, but suddenly there is no power left to escape. However, the probe explodes and ruptures the amoeba's cell membrane, thereby freeing the Enterprise and Spock's shuttle.

Errors and Explanations

The Nitpicker's Guide for Classic Trekkers


  1. Obviously the crew of Picard’s Enterprise hasn’t spent much time reading the logs of Kirk's Enterprise. In the Star Trek: The Next Generation episode Where Silence Has Lease, Picard and company encounter an area of blackness as well. When Picard asks Data to check the records for any similar occurrence, the android can find nothing. The visual appearence of the two areas are completely different.

Plot Oversights

  1. As Spock reaches up to open the doors to the shuttle bay so he can depart from the ship, McCoy grabs his hand. If you look closely at the atmosphere level indicator on the control panel, you will see that the shuttle bay isn't pressurized! Was Spock really going to open the personnel doors to the shuttle bay before it had a breathable atmosphere? There is probably an atmosphere retaining forcefield linking the entrance to the shuttle.
  2. Didn't McCoy help equip the shuttle prior to this scene? If he did, why isn't the shuttle bay already pressurised? The depressurisation must have occurred after McCoy finished helping to prepare the shuttle and left the shuttlebay.
  3. When Kirk suggests using anti-matter to destroy the organism, the crew seems genuinely impressed with the captain's brilliance. Didn't they recently use antimatter to destroy a creature in Obsession? They're probably wondering why they didn't think of it first!
  4. After configuring the probe to carry the antimatter, Kirk has Chekov set the timer for a detonation in seven minutes. Then they lodge it next to the chromosomes and make a mad dash out of the organism. The episode gives no indication that the probe is drifting away from its target. Why, then, can't Kirk set the time for ten minutes or ten hours and give the ship a few moments to spare? Setting the timer for longer could result in the organism having an adverse effect on the antimatter.

Equipment Oddities

  1. After McCoy refuses to wish him good luck, Spock boards the shuttle. It faces to the left. Then the shuttle rotates on its platform and finally departs. Therefore, when Spock boarded the shuttle it faced the front of the Enterprise. Then the shuttle turned around and. finally flew out the back of the ship. Yet in Journey to Babel, the shuttle carrying Ambassador Sarek lands, turns around, and the ambassador deplanes (deshuttles?). At this point the shuttle should be facing the back of the Enterprise, since the shuttle turned around. Yet the scene clearly shows that the shuttle faces left! Spock and McCoy used doors on the other side of the shuttle bay.
  2. Kirk still hasn't adjusted his mirror to the correct height. The scene in his quarters has the mirror chest high. See my explanation in the entry for Journey to Babel.
  3. Great confusion surrounds which button is the one for communications on the arm of the captain’s chair. For most of this episode Kirk uses the top button, but at least once he uses one of the middle buttons. This could be an experimental setting.

Nit Central

  1. John A. Lang on Friday, June 08, 2001 - 6:55 pm: The most important note of this episode is that Kirk is smarter than 400 Vulcans. Sophie Hawksworth on Monday, June 11, 2001 - 5:05 pm: Spock theorises that the Intrepid encountered the organism while it was low in energy - hungry. The Vulcans had less time to act.

Wiki users

  1. Commander Tal - 00:48, November 15, 2020 The Enterprise did not have enough power to stop from being pulled forward into the organism. Yet after planting the antimatter bomb, how did the Enterprise suddenly gain the ability to back out? They probably gained enough power for the engines to back them out bu puting other systems on reduced power settings.

The Original Series Season 2
Catspaw I Metamorphosis I Friday's Child I Who Mourns for Adonais?I Amok Time I The Doomsday Machine I Wolf in the Fold I The Changeling I The Apple I Mirror, Mirror I The Deadly Years I I, Mudd I The Trouble with Tribbles I Bread and Circuses I Journey to Babel I A Private Little War I The Gamesters of Triskelion I Obsession I The Immunity Syndrome I A Piece of the Action I By Any Other Name I Return to Tomorrow I Patterns of Force I The Ultimate Computer I The Omega Glory I Assignment: Earth
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