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The City on the Edge of Forever
Star-trek tos-season1-28
Season 1, Episode 28
General Information
Series Star Trek
Air date April 6, 1967
Written by Harlan Ellison
Directed by Joseph Pevney
Episode guide
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Star Trek episodes

Plot Summary

Stardate: 3134.0 Dr. McCoy freaks out Dr. McCoy freaks out

Captain Kirk and his Enterprise crew are in shaking situation. Sulu gets hit when the dashboard explodes. Spock reports that they are crossing ripples of time. Dr. McCoy administers a shot that wakes up Sulu. When the ship rocks violently, Dr. McCoy presses the needle of cordruzine against him. Then, Dr. McCoy snaps in hysteria and escapes the bridge. In the engineering room, Dr. McCoy knocks out an engineer and beams himself to the planet. In the bridge, Spock informs Captain Kirk about the side effects of the drug. Then, the security reports to Captain Kirk about what had happened.

Arriving on the planet, Captain Kirk and his crew explore the ruins. Spock notes that a strange object is putting out waves of time displacement. When Captain Kirk asks a question, the mysterious object explains that it's both machine and being and at the same time, it's not. The mysterious being confirms Spock's time gate theory is correct. The mysterious being reveals a window in the past. Spock's group manages to subdue Dr. McCoy. Captain Kirk asks Spock if they can use the time gate to prevent Dr. McCoy from hurting himself. When Captain Kirk's group preoccupied with the window of time, Dr. McCoy jumps into the time gate. Nyota reports that she has lost communication with the ship. Captain Kirk and the gang find themselves stranded on this planet without a past or a future. Edith and Kirk's relationship blossoms Edith and Kirk's relationship blossoms

Captain Kirk and Spock prepare themselves to stop Dr. McCoy from changing history. Nyota and Scotty bid them good luck in face of steep odds. Captain Kirk and Spock jump into the Time Gate and wind up during the great depression. Captain Kirk spots some clothes to steal. Though, a police officer attempts to arrest them. After breaking free, Captain Kirk and Spock run to a basement. Captain Kirk asks Spock to make some computer aid to track down Dr. McCoy. Then, Edith finds them and hires Spock and Kirk after Kirk manages to befriend Edith. During lunch, Edith gives the homeless a speech about humanity will harness energy, travel space, and find solutions to end world hunger. After being amazed by Kirk's workmanship, Edith tells Kirk that she has a flop, a place to sleep. Later, Kirk brings groceries and remarks that they don't have platinum or any precious metal. Edith pops by and sees Spock's invention. After work, Spock steals some tools for his radio work. Edith asks Kirk to walk her and answer her questions in exchange to allow Spock to borrow the tools. One of Edith's possible outcomes One of Edith's possible outcomes

While Captain Kirk chats with Edith on their walk, Spock sees a window in time, a newspaper article that reveals Edith's death. Captain Kirk reads an article on February 23, 1936 where Edith Keeler meets with the president. Spock informs Kirk that he read an obituary that Edith dies this year. Kirk realizes that Edith has two possible futures while Spock states that Dr. McCoy is the random element. If they do find how to set things straight and it involves Edith's death, Spock asks Captain Kirk if he is able to do that. Elsewhere, Dr. McCoy arrives in the city and chases a homeless man who ran away. Dr. McCoy asks the homeless man explain where they are. Dr. McCoy is amazed by his surroundings and breaks down about the hospital's needles and sutures. The homeless man steals Dr. McCoy's device and activates it.

Afterwards, Edith rescues and nurses Dr. McCoy back to health. Dr. McCoy asks Edith to allow him to repay her. Edith tells him that she has to go see a Clark Gable movie. When Kirk hears McCoy, he leaves Edith behind to meet up with Dr. McCoy. As Edith tries to cross the street, Kirk stops Dr. McCoy from saving Edith. Kirk could not explain why he did that. The trio reunite with Nyota's group and return to the Enterprise.

Production Notes

It's the last episode to be telecasted by NBC on Thursday nights. This episode has won the 1968 Hugo Award for Best Dramatic Presentation. During production, the script for this episode has been revised numerous times.

In the treatment of March 21, 1966, alterations include drug dealer, Edith's last name is Koestler, and Guardians of Forever are humanoids. Beckwith escapes through the time gates that altered history. The Enterprise became a pirate ship.

In the treatment of May 13, 1966, Kirk and his crew are sent to New York where a mob attacks them, thinking that they are foreigners who will take their jobs. The Time Guardians give Kirk and Spock a riddle to find the key. Edith is a Nun instead of a caregiver of the homeless. Spock finds Edith as the key.

In the first draft of June 3, 1966, Beckwith character is still used. There is an extra character added, a Trooper who is a World War I Veteran. He was hired by Spock and Kirk to find Beckwith.

In the draft of December 1, 1966, Dr. McCoy was bitten by an animal. Dr. McCoy takes over Beckwith's role in saving Edith.

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