Sunday, February 19, 2012

Star Trek: What Are Little Girls Made Of?

This article was first posted on August 18, 2010. It is presented in its entirety with some minor changes.

Star Trek: The Original Series begins to hit its stride with What Are Little Girls Made Of? Here are almost all the elements of what became synonymous with Star Trek: Plenty of action and Kirk being willing to jump into bed with just about anyone or anything in order to save the Enterprise, all wrapped up in a thought provoking science-fiction wrapper. The only thing missing is the spirited bickering between Spock and McCoy; for some reason, McCoy is completely absent in this episode.

Phaser fight! What more could you ask for in a Star Trek episode?

Unfortunately, What Are Little GirlsMade Of? also features something that was over-used in Star Trek: The Original Series: Kirk using rather simplistic logic to discombobulate supposedly sophisticated artificial intelligences. One has to wonder if the original programmers of all these computerized villains that Kirk dealt with during Star Trek's three seasons ever passed Computer Science 101; when Kirk started pushing their buttons, the artificial intelligences that the Enterprise's crew encountered usually ended up revealing themselves to be just about as sophisticated as Joseph Weizenbaum's Eliza.

What are little girls made of? I'd certainly like to know since I'd like to make me some of this! I'm referring, of course, to the naughty looking brunette with the barely there outfit, not the Lurch look-alike with the shaved head

What's particularly annoying in this episode are the contradictions inherent in what ultimately causes Roger Korby, Nurse Chapel's fiance and the episode's villain, to immolate himself and his delicious little fembot assistant, Andrea, at phaser-point; Kirk manages to manipulate Andrea and Ruk, Korby's hulking brute of an android bodyguard, into acting in emotional, almost human, ways and he even points this out to Korby to refute the latter's claim that an android society would be free of human foibles and the mayhem that often accompanies them. However, Korby's stated reason for killing himself and Andrea is that neither of them is human, Andrea because she is simply an android (albeit an incredibly sexy one) and himself because the human Korby died a long time ago, leaving behind a robotic copy that ostensibly carries his soul. Given that what triggers Korby's act of murder-suicide is Andrea throwing herself at him offering him her love (a decidedly human act), it's difficult to understand his reasoning.

But maybe that's the point.

After all, murder-suicide is hardly the act of a rational man and maybe Roger Korby's irrational reasoning was intentional.


Kirk prepares to open up a can of whoopass on a homocidal android using a...giant stone dildo?!?! How the hell did this make it past the censors?