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Podcast Enterprise: S2E08 I, Mudd


Space, the final frontier. These are the podcasts of the Podcast Enterprise. Its only mission: to explore story structures, to analyze our favorite characters and plotlines, to boldly talk what everyone has seen before

We will analyze all episodes of Star Trek: The Original Series or TOS for short using the following guiding structure:

  1. Synopsis or summary of the episode
  2. Story structure
  3. Character analysis
  4. Our likes and dislikes

The synopsis:

When this episode starts, something is wrong because there’s a new crew member aboard the ship, Enterprise. Dr. McCoy does not like Norman. Norman is very odd. Spock, of course, does not notice because Norman is cold and emotionless and Spock likes that.But Dr. McCoy knows that there’s something wrong with Norman.

Dr. McCoy’s suspicions are not entirely unfounded, because Norman goes into the engineering section, he tampers with the controls, he takes over the ship’s controls, puts them on some sort of an automatic drive, so that it goes straight towards a particular planet.Nothing that Sulu on the bridge does can alter the course of the Enterprise, and now Captain Kirk is very worried because they are supposed to be somewhere else and they’re going into another direction. And Norman seems to be a lot stronger than the average human. He makes his way to the bridge, he talks to Captain Kirk, and he says that they’re going to a particular planet.Captain Kirk has no business stopping the ship from going to that planet. And any attempt to change course, or to override the controls that Norman has programmed into the ship, will result in the ship’s destruction, and Spock confirms that this will happen. Therefore Kirk cannot do anything but wait for those four solar days that it takes to reach this planet that Norman is talking about.And Norman also reveals that he is an android during this time.

He’s not human. And that’s why he’s been behaving odd all this time. Now when they get to this peculiar planet, Norman, who has deactivated himself, reactivates himself and says that Kirk, Chekov, Uhura, McCoy and Spock must beam down to the planet.Everybody else must stay aboard the Enterprise. And if they don’t do what he says, again, he threatens them with engine destruction and various other forms of destruction. So Kirk decides to beam down.

Once they are there on that planet, they find themselves in a network of tunnels which are habitable for humans.And they meet up with an old nemesis of his called Harry Mudd. Now, this character actually appeared in a previous episode. He’s back. He’s a smuggler. He’s a criminal. He’s a thief. And he’s also extremely entertaining. What we learn now is that Mudd has captured this planet. He has kept all of these androids as servants.There is some technology here that allows him to create more androids. He creates more and more androids, mostly females, so that he can have some fun with them.

But, this scheme of his has backfired because the androids have decided that he’s a very interesting human specimen, and they want to study him, and they want to use him to lure more humans to this planet, so that they can study them also.And to Mudd’s amusement, he manages to capture Captain Kirk and the Enterprise, and not just some random ship. There were a lot of coincidences there. The androids start revealing themselves more and more.

They are completely logical, placid, they cannot be swayed this way or that and as Dr. McCoy says, they are physically and mentally perfect. Nothing can reach them. They are created by some sort of an alien civilization apparently from the galaxy of Andromeda. They study the humans and then they decide that the humans are too violent and impulsive and therefore they will serve the humans and bring them under control.Eventually that turns into, they will serve the humans and bring the galaxy under control, much to Kirk’s alarm.

This also affects Mudd because he becomes a prisoner of the androids as well. They find him as illogical as the rest of the humans, and Kirk, to escape this prison that they find themselves in, must come up with something creative so that he can literally short circuit those androids and work their logic against them.And to do this, towards the end of this episode, what we see is that Kirk employs certain illogical ways of dealing with the androids. He talks about being in captivity and then being happy while he’s in captivity. He tells the androids that humans must work themselves to death to be happy and all sorts of nonsensical dialogue follows after that.And Norman is something of a conduit for all of these androids.

That brings us to the end of this episode. Thank you for listening to the Podcast Enterprise. Please do share your reviews with us and please share this podcast with any of your writing friends or trekkies. Live long and prosper!

Stay tuned in for our next episode! Enjoy!


  1. Intro music: Music from
  2. Shotcut for editing the podcast
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