Is There in Truth No Beauty?

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"Is There in Truth No Beauty?"
Star Trek: The Original Series episode
Episode no. Season 3
Episode 5
Directed by Ralph Senensky
Written by Jean Lisette Aroeste
Featured music George Duning
Cinematography by Jerry Finnerman
Production code 062
Original air date October 18, 1968 (1968-10-18)
Guest actors
Episode chronology
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List of Star Trek: The Original Series episodes

"Is There in Truth No Beauty?" is a third season episode of the original science fiction television series Star Trek, first broadcast October 18, 1968. It is episode No. 60, production No. 62, written by Jean Lisette Aroeste, and directed by Ralph Senensky.

In this episode, the Enterprise travels with an alien ambassador whose appearance induces madness.


The starship USS Enterprise picks up a Medusan ambassador named Kollos. The ambassador belongs to the Medusans, a race of energy-based creatures, emotionally beautiful on the inside, yet with an outward appearance so hideous it drives humanoids insane. The Federation seeks a council with the Medusans for a technology trade in the area of improved navigation equipment for all starships.

To be transported, the Medusan must remain concealed inside a container. Lawrence Marvick, one of the designers of the Enterprise is beamed aboard first, then the transporter room is cleared. First Officer Spock, donning a special visor that allows Vulcans to tolerate the appearance of Medusans, beams the ambassador and his colleague aboard. Kollos, along with Dr. Miranda Jones, his beautiful assistant and a gifted telepath, materialize on the platform.

Spock offers Miranda help in carrying the Medusan container to her room. He and the young doctor find each other intriguing. Spock invites her and Marvick to a dinner with Captain Kirk later that evening. Spock leaves and Miranda opens the container to look upon her Medusan companion. The being appears as a wildly strobing array of light and color. She seems immune to its appearance.

During the dinner, Miranda notices Spock's "IDIC" badge and questions him about it. She concludes that Spock is far more powerful with his telepathic abilities than she could ever be, including being able to better communicate with her Medusan companion. During after-dinner conversation Miranda feels faint, sensing murderous intentions from someone in the room. She asks to be excused and quickly leaves. She later senses that the murderous desire emanated from Marvick, but still doesn't know his intended target.

Marvick, who is obsessively in love with Miranda who rebuffs his advances, intends to kill Kollos. Later that evening Marvick enters Kollos' room with a phaser, but Kollos senses the intrusion and emerges from his box. Marvick sees the Medusan and is driven insane.

Marvick makes his way to Engineering, knocks out Chief Engineer Scott and other crew members, and begins to reset the controls of the ship. Suddenly, the Enterprise accelerates to Warp Factor 9 on a course taking the ship outside of the galaxy. Marvick is apprehended and, pointing at Miranda, shouts the warning "Don't love her! She'll kill you if you love her!". Immediately afterward, he dies. Chief Medical Officer Dr. McCoy cannot find any cause. Without any navigational references of where they are, the Enterprise is lost in space.

Being naturally gifted navigators, the Medusan agrees to a mind meld with Spock. Using his humanoid body to operate the ship's controls, Kollos will return it to known space. Miranda, extremely jealous of Spock's ability to join with the Medusan, strongly objects when he chooses him over her. She debates the decision but realizes there is no alternative, since she has no idea how to pilot the ship, but Spock does.

Questioned about her strong attachment toward the alien, she claims it is because Kollos' mind is the most beautiful thing she has ever seen. At this time it is also revealed that Miranda is completely blind, the true reason she is immune to the presence of the Medusan when out of his container. The special netting over her dress is actually a sophisticated sensor net which allows her to "see".

Kollos is brought to the bridge, where a special partition is set up to keep him hidden from the bridge crew. Spock dons the special visor and opens Kollos' container. He mind-melds with the creature as everyone curiously watches. Soon, Spock emerges from the partition with a happy smile and warmly greets the crew as Kollos. Miranda impatiently watches Kollos use Spock's body to pilot the Enterprise back into known space.

The ship safely returned to its original position, it is time for Kollos to go back to his box. Spock moves behind the partition and then Lt. Sulu notices Spock's visor still sitting on the helm console. Kirk tries to stop him, but it is too late; Spock emerges from the partition and madly attacks the crew.

Kirk uses a phaser to stun Spock and he is rushed to sickbay. Kirk, knowing Miranda was jealous of Spock, accuses her of telepathically suggesting that Spock forget his visor. McCoy reports Spock is dying but, as an act of goodwill, Miranda joins her mind with his, restoring his sanity and saving his life.

Miranda and Kollos arrive at their destination, by which time they have made a mind link. No longer jealous, Miranda now understands what Spock experienced. She has also forgiven Captain Kirk but, before she and Kollos depart, Kirk offers Miranda a rose. She inquires "I suppose it has thorns", whereupon Kirk replies, "I never met a rose that didn't".

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