There Was A Freakish Man Who Had A Freakish Smile
Sulu does a final ten-second countdown, during which Scotty wipes his nose, Uhura rubs her hands, Bones grits his teeth, and Kirk gets new lighting. Nothing happens. Kirk lets out a breath. "A very...interesting game -- this poker," Spock comments. Piqued, Kirk tells him, "It DOES have AD-vantages over chess!" Especially when you play it with an android, a Klingon, and a dancing doctor. Bones tells Spock that he'd love to teach it to him. Balock announces himself. "Here it comes -- is it raise or call?" Kirk quickly wonders. Balock tells them that their death has been delayed, and he and his forces will only relent if proof of the corbomite device is trotted out. Spock goes to his station while Scotty shakes his head and smiles at his Captain's ingenuity. Kirk orders Uhura to hold on any response. "Let him sweat it out a bit," he sneers. Kirk must get a little impatient, because right after he delivers his last sweaty line, he requests a ship-to-ship transmission and announces, "Request denied!" He makes a hand motion ordering Uhura to hang up. Spock gets another wavy visual of Balock. Balock announces that he still hasn't decided what to do with them: "And having permitted your primitive efforts to see my form, I trust it has pleased your curiosity. And now, another demonstration of our superiority." The Bridge crew look around at each other. Yeoman Rand comes in with a thermos and some cups. Okay, is she on space crank, or is she supposed to be Balock's demonstration of superiority? Bones mentions that he thought power was out in the galley. "I used a hand phaser and zap! Hot coffee!" Rand tells him. She's on crank. On the viewscreen, a Dodge Neon of lights separates from Balock's bathing cap. The bathing cap fades away. Balock's voice announces that he will tow them to one of their alien planets and intern them there: "Your ship will be destroyed, of course." Spock reports that their engines are coming back online. Balock tells them not to be under-intimidated by the size of the Dodge Neon, as it can destroy them as easily as the bathing cap could. Wait, just go back and re-read that sentence. If you're not giggling now, there's something wrong with you. Then again, I'm giggling to myself at three o'clock in the morning after just having assisted a five-hour Emilia-Romagna cooking class -- maybe I'm the one with serious problems. The ship shakes, and Spock announces, "Tractor beam again." Balock tells them that all their ship's systems are online so they can maintain their gravity and life-support systems. Balock gives the usual warnings that any attempted escape on their behalf will end in their fiery death and destruction. Can you really have destruction after death? I mean, isn't it just implied? Sulu confirms that they're being towed.