Miri (Star Trek: The Original Series)

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"Miri"
Star Trek: The Original Series episode
Episode no. Season 1
Episode 8
Directed by Vincent McEveety
Written by Adrian Spies
Featured music Alexander Courage
Cinematography by Jerry Finnerman
Production code 12
Original air date October 27, 1966 (1966-10-27)
Guest actors
Episode chronology
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"What Are Little Girls Made Of?"
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"Dagger of the Mind"
List of Star Trek: The Original Series episodes

"Miri" is the eighth episode of the first season of the science fiction television series Star Trek, that was first broadcast October 27, 1966, and repeated June 29, 1967. It was written by Adrian Spies and directed by Vincent McEveety.

In the plot, the Enterprise discovers an exact duplicate of Earth, where the only survivors of a deadly man-made plague are some of the planet's children.

Plot[edit]

The Federation starship USS Enterprise, under the command of Captain James T. Kirk, follows an old planetary distress call leading to a planet that resembles Earth in every detail.

Kirk assembles a landing party consisting of himself, First Officer Spock, Chief Medical Officer Dr. McCoy, Yeoman Janice Rand, and two security personnel, to investigate this remarkable find. Upon their arrival, they find the planet resembles Earth of 1960, but seems abandoned. As they inspects a tricycle, they are attacked by a man who seems infected by a disfiguring mutation, but shows incredible strength. Kirk strikes the man three times, the man has a seizure and dies. A mysterious figure catches their attention and they investigate.

The team discovers a terrified girl, who appears physically normal. She identifies herself as Miri (Kim Darby) and states that she ran away from them because "grups" (a contraction of "grown ups") killed and hurt the children before they died. Miri tells them that she and her friends are "onlies", the only ones left as all the adults are dead.

The landing party starts to notice sores are forming on their bodies; Spock however remains immune. Miri informs them that these are the first signs of the disease, and they will soon become like the other adults. The team searches a hospital for clues to the mysterious condition. They discover the disease infects those who have reached puberty. It is a side-effect of an experiment to prolong life; working on children but, when they reach puberty, a short period of violent rage and then death followed. They learn that the children are over 300 years old, having aged only one month's time every century.

Spock discovers that once the disease starts, they only have 7 days to live. Even though he seems immune to the disease, he believes he is still a carrier and could infect the Enterprise if he were to return there.

Meanwhile the rest of the children, who do not trust these grups, decide to meddle with their plans. A boy named Jahn steals the landing party's communicators, rendering McCoy's search for a cure impossible without the Enterprise computers. Miri, however, doesn't agree with the mischief and stays near Captain Kirk, on whom she appears to have a crush. However, when Yeoman Rand becomes hysterical over their impending fate and Kirk console her, Miri becomes jealous and runs away. In a scheme with her friends, they kidnap Rand. While this happens, another girl succumbs to the disease, and goes insane. After assauting Kirk, the girl's body, covered in blue sores, collapses.

Miri is confronted by Kirk, who tells her she and the onlies will eventually contract the disease if they don't help him find a cure. To illustrate this fact, he grabs Miri's arms and shows her the blue sores that are already forming on her skin.

Miri takes Kirk to where Rand is being held captive. He confronts the children and tries to get through to them that none of this is a game. At first the children don't listen and continue to become increasingly menacing until one of them finally beats Kirk nearly sense-less. Kirk implores them to think of the youngest onlies, who will be left without resources when the older ones are dead. He warns them that the stores of food and supplies are nearly depleted. He also points out that the children have hurt him and now literally have blood on their hands, exactly like the grups they are afraid of.

Kirk rounds up the children and returns to the hospital. He finds that McCoy, unable to accurately test his experimental serum, has injected himself with a full dose and collapsed to the floor. Soon, however, his sores fade away and they know that the serum is both safe and effective. After curing the landing party and the children, Kirk informs Starfleet to send teachers and advisers to help the children start their lives over again.

Reception[edit]

Zack Handlen of The A.V. Club gave the episode an 'A-' rating, describing using children as the antagonists as one of the script's "smarter twists." Handlen felt that the sense of threat was maintained throughout as although the audience knew the crew wouldn't die, "they don't know that."[1]

Production[edit]

The planetary exteriors were shot on the set used for fellow Desilu series The Andy Griffith Show,[2] part of what had originally been known as the RKO Forty Acres backlot in Culver City which had been acquired by Desilu.

Apart from guest stars Kim Darby and Michael J. Pollard, several of the children on Miri's world were portrayed by relatives of the Trek cast and crew. Among them were William Shatner's daughter Lisabeth, Grace Lee Whitney's two sons, and Gene Roddenberry's daughters.

Two of the other child actors, Phil and Iona Morris, later appeared in subsequent Trek shows as well. (They are the children of Mission: Impossible star Greg Morris.)

This was child actress Kellie Flanagan's first television role. She played the Blonde Girl standing on the table in the schoolhouse. Between takes her agent, Dorothy Day Otis, got her a line to deliver during the scene, which led to Flanagan receiving her SAG card.[3]

One of the children was played by John Megna, who also played Charles Baker 'Dill' Harris in To Kill a Mockingbird in 1962.

See also[edit]

  • The Cry of the Onlies, a Star Trek novel by Judy Klass which includes events occurring after the episode Miri. (In this novel, all references to Miri's world being a copy of Earth were ordered removed; Miri's world is presented as a long-abandoned colony of Earth.)
  • Forgotten History, a Trek novel by Christopher L. Bennett. It reveals that Miri's world is not merely a copy of Earth, it actually is Earth - of a parallel timeline. Miri's Earth had briefly drifted into the main timeline due to instability in the fabric of spacetime.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Handlen, Zack (January 22, 2009). ""What Are Little Girls Made Of?"/"Miri"". The A.V. Club. Retrieved August 15, 2009. 
  2. ^ "Mayberry in Star Trek". Mayberry.com. 
  3. ^ Gerace, Adam. "...And Then I Wrote". AdamGerace.com. Retrieved 29 October 2014. 

External links[edit]