Questions tagged [star-trek-tos]

For questions about "Star Trek: The Original Series" which aired in 1966. Always use in conjunction with the [star-trek] tag. Users should clarify if they want to include or exclude the TOS-era films in the answers, since we have no separate tag for those.

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When and why did the Enterprise get balls?

When the USS Enterprise first appeared, its warp nacelles looked like this from the rear: At some point in The Original Series, the ship seems to have enjoyed a mild refit, resulting in ball-like ...
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81 votes
3 answers
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They ARE Klingons, and it's a long story... What's the story?

I just watched the episode of Star Trek DS9 Trials and Tribble-ations where the Defiant is taken back in time to the events of ‘The Trouble with Tribbles’ episode from Star Trek TOS. Those who ...
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73 votes
2 answers
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Were McCoy's medical instruments Swedish salt shakers?

A rumour I had heard a long time ago was that Dr. McCoy's small medical devices in The Original Series were actually Swedish salt shakers. Are there any statements corroborating this?
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68 votes
6 answers
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Has the autodestruct sequence ever not been aborted on a Starfleet vessel?

I remember the autodestruct being initiated many times, but always being aborted at almost the last possible second. Obviously, Captains Kirk, Picard, Janeway never went all the way to destruct, but ...
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62 votes
6 answers
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Is James Doohan’s missing finger ever noticeable in Star Trek?

We were just discussing, in the SF&F chat room here, that James Doohan was missing a finger, but there's no reference to this and I remember watching the series over and over, whenever I had the ...
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62 votes
4 answers
63k views

When did the red shirt careers change to yellow shirts in Star Trek and why?

In the original Star Trek engineers and security officers wore red shirts but in ST:TNG engineers and security officers wore yellow shirts and command officers wore red shirts. Was it ever explained ...
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54 votes
5 answers
10k views

Starship Enterprise: Always flying left-to-right?

I am watching Star Trek together with my wife. We just finished the three seasons of The Original Series1, and are now mid-way into Star Trek Next Generation. I don't think I have seen the Enterprise ...
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50 votes
4 answers
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Why does Captain Kirk wear green in the DS9 episode Trials and Tribble-ations?

We know that in TOS era Star Trek command officers wore gold and operations officers wore red. In the DS9/TOS cross-over episode Trials and Tribble-ations O'Brien explains why Sisko (pretending to be ...
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50 votes
2 answers
7k views

Is the tartan worn by Scotty in "Savage Curtain" an actual clan tartan?

In the Star Trek TOS episode "Savage Curtain", Scotty is shown wearing a tartan and a sporran as part of his dress uniform, as seen below: Is this an actual clan tartan, and if so, to which clan does ...
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48 votes
1 answer
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Female uniforms and colored panties in Star Trek TOS

In Star Trek TOS you very frequently get glimpses of the female crew's panties under their short skirt uniforms. In every case I've noticed they are always a matching color. This makes me wonder -- ...
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43 votes
2 answers
10k views

In Star Trek, do the Greek gods lack nipples?

OK, I hope this question doesn't seem prurient, but I happened upon the image and literally couldn't decide what I'm looking at. In the TOS episode "Who Mourns for Adonais?" we learn that the Greek ...
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42 votes
2 answers
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Did Lucille Ball have a creative influence on Star Trek?

There are many articles on the role that Lucille Ball had in saving Star Trek from an early death and how she advocated for the show in its early days. Was her role limited to funding, politics, and ...
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42 votes
4 answers
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What is Spock's full name?

What is Spock's full, allegedly unpronounceable name? (And no, I don't mean Dr. Benjamin McLane Spock. I mean the son of Sarek.)
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41 votes
14 answers
16k views

Is Starfleet a military or civilian organization?

If they are civilian in the common sense, why then do they wear military style uniforms, have a military hierarchical command and military rank structures; have a Starfleet Command and a Starfleet ...
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41 votes
3 answers
7k views

What was the first 3D CGI used in Star Trek?

This means I'm seeking the first three-dimensionally computer-modeled and rendered imagery used in Star Trek. We know there was extensive 3D CGI used in DS9 (Odo) and Voyager (USS Voyager). But ...
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40 votes
2 answers
10k views

Source of Scotty's advice on appearing a genius

I vaguely recall a quote from Scotty of Star Trek:TOS where he indicated that it's important to always leave a little extra behind so that you can pull it out at the right moment so that you appear to ...
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40 votes
4 answers
12k views

Have Star Trek actors commented on why they didn't work more after Star Trek?

Among the few dozen main characters in the Star Trek series, very few take any successful main roles in subsequent series. Exceptions: Patrick Stewart in the X-Men movies William Shatner in Boston ...
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39 votes
2 answers
27k views

Why is Worf in The Undiscovered Country?

After watching The Undiscovered Country I noticed that the advocate for Kirk and Bones during their trial is none other than Michael Dorn, a.k.a. Worf. During the trial I believe they even call the ...
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39 votes
7 answers
7k views

How did humans and vulcans communicate in Star Trek: First Contact?

In the 23rd century, it was displayed that Zefram Cochrane didn't know about universal translator. That's why he was unfamiliar with and asked about its working principle to Kirk (Star Trek: The ...
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38 votes
5 answers
20k views

Why was there a death penalty for going to Talos IV?

Starfleet General Order 7 prohibits any contact with the planet Talos IV on penalty of execution, and this is apparently the only death penalty in Starfleet (at the time of The Menagerie). But why ...
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37 votes
5 answers
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Spock's wardrobe malfunction

In season 1 episode 4 "Where No Man Has Gone Before", why is Spock clearly wearing a command uniform when he's a Science Officer? Also, why does he look like he has got deep space jaundice?
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36 votes
7 answers
13k views

Where did the nickname of 'Bones' for McCoy come from?

I've noticed that Jim Kirk often refers to Dr McCoy affectionately as 'Bones'. Now, Memory Alpha gives the following explanation: Bones is short for "Saw Bones" ... The use of "Bones" originates ...
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36 votes
6 answers
70k views

Is the "Space, The Final Frontier" quote "in universe"?

Probably everyone reading this recognises the most famous split-infinitive in (science) fiction: From Star Trek TOS: Space: the final frontier. These are the voyages of the starship Enterprise. ...
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34 votes
4 answers
6k views

Do we ever see a 23rd Century Starfleet Officer with facial hair?

I recall that in the beginning of Star Trek: The Motion Picture, McCoy beams aboard the ship with a fabulous beard. The next time we see him though, he's shaved it off. That got me to thinking that ...
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34 votes
4 answers
7k views

Was Roddenberry really so far ahead of his time on race?

Gene Roddenberry is often credited with being revolutionary in his treatment of race equality in the characters of Chekov, Sulu, and especially Uhura. The on-screen kiss between Shatner and Nichols ...
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34 votes
3 answers
6k views

Kirk and Spock friendship in Original Series

The 2nd through 6th original Star Trek movies make a lot of reference to Kirk and Spock's friendship. In particular Spock says, 'I am and always shall be your friend.' I can't recall their ...
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34 votes
1 answer
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What was the gaudily coloured equipment on the Enterprise's corridor walls in ST:TOS?

Was any in-universe explanation given for those gaudily coloured things on the Enterprise's corridor walls? Out-of-universe, they look very much like discarded match plate patterns from a metal ...
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34 votes
3 answers
6k views

Why did 'Star Trek: The Original Series' change its intro titles from yellow to blue after Season 2?

Is there any known reason as to why the intro titles to 'Star Trek: The Original Series' changed from yellow to blue after Season 2? It's something that intrigues me perhaps far more than it should. ...
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34 votes
3 answers
5k views

Why (out-of-universe) was this central Star Trek character killed?

This central character died in Star Trek: Generations in 1994: (spoilers below are not hidden) When and why was it decided that the character would die? As of 1994, the characters of McCoy, Spock, ...
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33 votes
9 answers
11k views

Did the Original Enterprise Have Landing Gear?

This is something that's bothered since, well, literally since the 1960s. On the original Enterprise (NCC-1701) there are two long triangular regions marked on the bottom of the saucer section (...
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33 votes
4 answers
89k views

Was Dr. Noonian Soong's name inspired by Khan Noonien Singh?

I just recently realized that "Dr. Noonian Soong" and "Khan Noonien Singh" sound familiar. Is there documented confirmation that the TNG writers were inspired by Star Trek II? Or is this purely a ...
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32 votes
8 answers
10k views

Does same-species racism exist in Star Trek?

Like it or not, racism has been a major part of Earth's history. It still plagues the planet today. However, in the future that Star Trek presents, same-species racism has been practically eliminated, ...
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32 votes
4 answers
6k views

Does James Kirk have any named superiors in Star Trek: The Original Series?

In Star Trek: The Original Series, does James Kirk have any named superior officers, officers who would deliver orders to him and who would expect them to be obeyed? I seem to remember the presence of ...
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32 votes
6 answers
9k views

Could the original or other Enterprises' saucers separate?

The Enterprise-D was capable of saucer separation. Was this true of any other Enterprises, e.g. the original?
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31 votes
3 answers
6k views

Do they still use days of the week or months in the era of Stardates?

I understand how the stardate system works in Star Trek and it doesn't really lend itself to casual conversation ("see you on star date 41645", as opposed to "see you on Monday") or recurring events ...
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31 votes
3 answers
3k views

How did the crew of the Enterprise decide where to go next?

In the original series, the Enterprise has a five-year mission into "uncharted space". Once they're out beyond the charts, how exactly do Kirk and the other officers on the Enterprise decide where to ...
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31 votes
6 answers
20k views

What political system does Star Trek's Federation operate under?

I've watched all of the Original Series and The Next Generation, and bits of Deep Space 9 and Voyager, all of the movies, but none of the more recent series, or the books. In all of the material I've ...
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31 votes
6 answers
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How would Starfleet know what a Romulan looks like in Star Trek 2009?

In TOS, Kirk's Enterprise encounters a Romulan warbird for the first time, after it had destroyed several Starfleet outposts along the Neutral Zone. When they see the ship's captain, they are ...
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30 votes
2 answers
4k views

What happened to the Enterprise crew after TOS?

I just rewatched the TNG episode "Relics", where Scotty is revealed to have kept himself alive in the transport buffers of a ship. This got me thinking - do we know what happened to other members of ...
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29 votes
6 answers
9k views

Are the events of Enterprise considered canon?

The series "Enterprise" takes place a century before the events of TOS. Are the things that happened in Enterprise considered canon or would they be a spin-off series of sorts? The specific events I'...
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29 votes
1 answer
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Why does Kif appear at the end of "Where No Fan Has Gone Before"?

In the closing credits of "Where No Fan Has Gone Before" (Futurama Season 4, Episode 11) we are shown a collection of stills that appeared in the show, to the sound of a variant of the Star Trek theme....
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28 votes
10 answers
4k views

Why Did Scotty Not Go Insane?

On the question about the transporters in Star Trek on whether the original person dies in the transporter, I provided this answer based on the text of the Writer's Guide for the series Star Trek: The ...
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28 votes
3 answers
5k views

Is there a reason Dr. McCoy has a decorative lizard thing on his sickbay wall?

As far as I can remember it's been there for all of the 1.5 series I've watched so far, and no one's ever commented on it. Does it have any particular significance or is it just a random object?
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27 votes
7 answers
11k views

Why was Enterprise on a five-year mission in TOS?

There is a small difference between intro texts in TOS: Space: the final frontier. These are the voyages of the starship Enterprise. Its five-year mission: to explore strange new worlds, to seek ...
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27 votes
2 answers
5k views

Has Starfleet ever sent ships on extra-galactic missions?

There have been incidents in both TOS and TNG where their respective Enterprises have been flung outside the galaxy against their will, due to alien intervention. For example, "By Any Other Name", "...
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26 votes
2 answers
2k views

Was Star Trek's original Captain Kirk always fond of antiques?

In The Wrath of Kahn (TWOK), there are at least 2 references to Kirk's fondness for antiques. Spock states that he's aware of this fondness when he gives him an old edition of A Tale of Two Cities; ...
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26 votes
1 answer
5k views

Is there a canon reason why Klingon and Romulan vessels are so similar in shape?

Not counting shuttles, transport vessels or bases, Klingon and Romulan ships have a very similar basis in their shapes. They also share the same colors. Is there any canon reason as to why so many ...
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26 votes
4 answers
6k views

What is the origin of Hikaru Sulu's last name?

Although Hikaru is a Japanese first name, Sulu is not a Japanese last name, and no Japanese last name I know sounds remotely like Sulu. As a matter of fact, the Japanese translation of Star Trek ...
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26 votes
4 answers
4k views

Why does the dedication plaque on the Enterprise (NCC-1701) bridge say the ship is of the "Starship Class?"

I'm looking for a reasonable, in-universe explanation that works with the Star Trek canon. It is a well-known fact that Kirk's Enterprise as seen in the original series is of the Constitution class. ...
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  • 2,415
25 votes
8 answers
6k views

Are any regular bridge crew on TNG actually members of the next generation?

So, the sequel (if we ignore TAS) to the original Star Trek is Star Trek: The Next Generation. My question simply is: are any of the regular bridge crew actually from the generation following that of ...
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