Star Trek : The Conscience of the King

January 19, 2015 in Guest Blogs, Star Trek by GuestBlogs

A Guest Blog by Mindless Droid


This week’s classic Star Trek episode is The Conscience of the King. The Enterprise diverts to planet Q. Doctor Thomas Leighton claims to have invented a new synthetic food but it is not the real reason he called the Enterprise. Leighton believes that an actor Anton Karidian in a traveling Shakespeare company is actually Kodos the Executioner who killed half the population of Tarsus IV years ago. Leighton and Kirk are two of only nine survivors who had seen the face of Kodos. Kirk believes that Kodos is long dead but after some research he returns to Leighton’s home to attend a party for the group hoping to meet Karidian. At the party kirk meets Karidian’s daughter Lenore and during a walk outside they find Leighton dead.


Kirk now even more suspicious arranges for the ship that was carrying the company to leave orbit without them. Kirk then offers to take them to their next stop. Aboard the Enterprise Kirk discovers that Lieutenant Riley and he are the last of the nine survivors left alive. He demotes Riley to engineering to keep him away from Karidian. Spock suspicious of Kirk’s motives does some of his own research and discovers that when the other seven eye witnesses died the Karidian players were somewhere nearby. Riley alone in engineering calls to the rec room and is listening to a song by Spock playing a Vulcan harp and Uhura singing. Unknown to Riley someone sneaks in and squirts something into his milk. After taking a drink Riley starts choking Uhura realizing something is wrong sends help. Riley is saved but is in critical condition.

Spock is certain that Riley has been poisoned and that Karidian is Kodos. McCoy asks Kirk what he will do. Later in Kirk’s quarters as Spock and Kirk discuss what to do they hear the hum of a phaser that is set to overload that if it detonates would take out the entire deck? Kirk finds the phaser at the last second in the red alert light and ejects it into space. Kirk finally confronts Karidian who is evasive in his answers. Kirk has him record an order Kodos gave at the colony to compare with the ships voice records of Kodos. Meanwhile in sick bay Riley overhears McCoy’s log entry about the suspicion of Karidian being Kodos. The voices are a near perfect match but Kirk is still unsure as a man’s life is in the balance.


As the Karidian players begin a presentation of Hamlet Riley sneaks backstage with a phaser intending to kill Karidian. Kirk finds Riley and talks him out of it with Karidian overhearing the conversation. Karidian comes backstage and Lenore notices he’s upset. He tells her that a voice from the past is haunting him a past he never told her about. It is then that she reveals that it was her who killed the other seven eyewitnesses and that after tonight all the ghosts will be dead. Karidian is horrified by what his daughter has done. Kirk overhearing the conversation approaches them and orders them to come with him. Kirk calls a guard to escort them and Lenore now totally over the edge grabs the guard’s phaser and runs on stage. Kirk and Karidian follow her. Lenore holds them at gun point and as she goes to shoot Kirk Karidian jumps in the way and she kills her father. Kirk disarms her and she is taken to sick bay as she has gone totally insane. McCoy reports to Kirk that Lenore will get the best care and that she believes that her father is alive and still performing. He then asks Kirk if he cared for Lenore Kirk doesn’t answer going through his command duties but gives McCoy a knowing look.


This was a really good episode. It gives us some of Kirk’s backstory. We get to see Riley again and unfortunately this would be his last appearance. The twist at the end was unexpected. Lenore descent into total insanity was very dramatic and sad. No red shirts were harmed in this episode.