Star Trek

Dagger of the Mind

Season 1, Ep 9, Aired 11/3/66
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  • Episode Description
  • Kirk investigates an experimental facility for holding prisoners and finds a sinister scheme.

  • Cast & Crew
  • Leonard Nimoy

    Mr. Spock

  • William Shatner

    Captain James Tiberius Kirk

  • Shimon Wincelberg

  • Vincent McEveety

  • James Gregory

    Dr. Tristan Adams

  • Fan Reviews (9)
  • Not when you've sat in that room.

    By amazingwebhead, Nov 05, 2007

  • In "Dagger of the Mind" the "Star Trek" crew explores the problems of penal systems and the moral questions they raise. A perfect facility by reputation comes under question as it crosses paths with the "Star Trek" Enterprise crew.

    By jrgreenmd, Jul 14, 2007

  • Captain Kirk and his Yeoman visit a house of horrors.

    By Celedorian, Aug 26, 2010

  • First mind-meld

    By the_cyberleader, Apr 25, 2006

  • One of my favourites

    By jahnmiri, Dec 05, 2009

  • Trivia & Quotes
  • Quotes (5)

    • Dr. Adams: Captain, you remind me of the ancient skeptic who demanded of the wise old sage to be taught all the world's wisdom while standing on one foot.

    • McCoy: It's hard to believe that a man could die of loneliness. Kirk: Not when you've sat in that room.

    • Kirk: But (Adams) was alone. Can you imagine the mind emptied by that thing, without even a tormentor for company.

    • Spock: Interesting. You Earth people glorify organized violence for forty centuries, but you imprison those who employ it privately. McCoy: And, of course, your people found an answer. Spock: We disposed of emotion, Doctor. Where there's no emotion, there's no motive for violence.

    • Kirk: One of the advantages of being a captain is being able to ask for advice without necessarily having to take it.

    Notes (5)

    • Features recycled Delta Vega matte painting from "Where No Man Has Gone Before," this time for Tantalus colony, with refinery tanks removed and entrance doorway changed.

    • This episode is parodied by South Park in Episode 24 (Production code 211) "Roger Ebert Should Lay Off the Fatty Foods." That episode is littered with references, including a mindmeld between a counselor and a student.

    • First mention and use of the Vulcan mind-meld. In Star Trek: Enterprise episode, "The Forge", Syrrann, the Vulcan who discovered Surak's katra, said "Surak tells us... (mind-melding) is the heritage of every Vulcan."

    • This is the second (and last time) that a holiday celebration is mentioned - "Charlie X" mentions Thanksgiving. One wonders if they celebrate a secular version of Christmas?

    • Writer Shimon Wincelberg is credited as S. Bar-David.

    Trivia (14)

    • Trivia: For once, Kirk is wearing a black undershirt as well as his tunic. When he falls off the chair you can see a shirt instead of a bare chest. This is unusual for Kirk. Most often his uniform doesn't include the undershirt as you can tell in other episodes where it is torn.

    • The two transporter operators at the beginning are unusually unprofessional. Neither one of them knows that penal colonies have security screens, or even understand that a security screen is blocking their transporter beam.

    • When the intruder alert goes off, a security guard come to the bridge. This makes sense. What doesn't make sense is that once he makes sure there's no intruder on the bridge, he faces away from the turbolift: the only entrance onto the bridge that an intruder could come through. Sure enough, Van Gelder comes in behind him and knocks him out before he can respond. The guard fails to respond despite the fact that he should be at attention.

    • The transporter operator (Berkley) is credited as an ensign, but the uniform is clearly that of a Lieutenant.

    • When Kirk escapes the Tantalus field, he knocks out Dr. Adams and punches out another person before leaving. When he comes back only a few moments later, only Dr. Adams is on the floor.

    Show More Trivia

    Allusions (3)

    • Tantalus: A Greek myth about a man who commits crimes and is punished by the gods by never being able to satisfy his thirst or hunger. The stream of water would recede when he reached for it, the fruit trees' branches would raise when he reached for fruit.

    • Patient The patient who has had her memories removed is named Lethe, after a river in the classical Greek underworld that appears in Dante's Inferno. The river Lethe had a unique property that whoever drank of it would lose all memory of their previous life.

    • Title: Referencing Shakespeare's MacBeth: "Is this a dagger which I see before me, / The handle toward my hand? Come, let me clutch thee. / I have thee not, and yet I see thee still. / Art thou not, fatal vision, sensible / To feeling as to sight? or art thou but / A dagger of the mind, a false creation..." In plotting a murder to gain the throne, Macbeth causes himself considerable mental anguish, seeing an unreal dagger that is really a symbol of his guilt.

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