Horrid alien costume and poor treatment of deep philosophical issues make this a bad episode
Dec 29, 2009
The year is 2025 and humans have expanded across the stars, exterminating all life forms that the explorers have encountered. All that is left are museum exhibits of the creatures and the story opens with a band of teenage students being taken on a tour of the museum. The profit motive still exists, so crime has not been eliminated and Henderson James has smuggled a living Megasoid to Earth. The Megasoids are very dangerous creatures, they are extremely intelligent and their goal is to kill humans. As a consequence of this danger, the act of smuggling a Megasoid is a capital offense, so Henderson must do everything he can to keep the existence of the creature secret. When the Megasoid escapes, it must be hunted down, but Henderson lacks the courage to do it, so he seeks out a renegade scientist that is willing to create a duplicate of him. The technology exists to create the duplicates, but it is heavily regulated and the law is that the duplicate must be destroyed after only a few hours. Duplicates lack the memory of the original, but over time they become more and more like their original. After a few initial errors, both Hendersons are hunting down the Megasoid and one of them is killed. The remaining one manages to kill the Megasoid but the remaining Henderson then dies at midnight. For the scientist, unwilling to risk the possibility that the duplicate will live, incorporated a poison into the design that would automatically kill it. While there is a lot of interesting philosophy in this episode, for example the acts of exterminating other species and creating duplicates for the sole purpose of carrying out the tasks you abhor, it is all poorly done. The Megasoid costume makes it look like a cheap "Chickenman" and its' actions when it attacks a human look more like an energetic back rub. The psychological tension between Henderson's wife and the two versions of Henderson are strained and artificial. This could have been a deeply moving episode; the last member of a species is killed yet there is no mention of remorse or concern. The theme of species death is so much better handled in the episode of the Star Trek original series called "The Man Trap."
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