There Was A Freakish Man Who Had A Freakish Smile
You know, I can't recap this part in the daylight. It's just...wrong. I need some serious mood-altering liquids.
I don't know if I mentioned this, but the Dodge Neon? Literally a Desi-Lu graphic. Or perhaps it's one of those bulbous Danish chandeliers that were so common in '60s living rooms all over the country but now go for, like, tequillions of dollars. Gustave would know which designer I mean.
Okay. I think I can handle this now.
Nope, still can't.
I'm now armed with a pillow to scream into, a large glass of gin, a cat on either side, and the super-quick remote in case I need to bail. The away team beams into squats as they arrive on the Dodge Neon. They look around and scrunch through a doorway. Kirk, his phaser out, freezes as he spots something. It's Balock! Okay, when I first saw this, my reaction was, "Crappinola! They're so low-budget in this one, they aren't even trying to make it look real!" but then Mathra explained that Balock is supposed to look like a puppet because he is a puppet. Kirk confirms that it's "a dummy -- a puppet of some kind" right before a creepy-high voice says, "I'm Balock -- welcome aboard!" First of all, it's not the booming, Echo Canyon voice Enterprise had been hearing all along. Secondly, who let Truman Capote onto the set? The Away Team give wilds looks around until they spy a dimly-lit area, slightly shrouded by a glittery curtain. Something small and creepy sits on something cushiony and creepy and puts his/her/its hand on the top of a stoplight. The curtain draws back to reveal an overgrown baby dressed in silvery-green lamé with a matching lamé sweatband around its bald head. After being fooled by the other dummy once, there is no way I was buying this was a real person. No. Way. Unfortunately, Mathra couldn't hold back his excitement as he burst out, "See -- it's Clint Howard!"
Kirk walks forward with the rest of the team and introduces himself: "I'm Captain Kirk." "And McCoy and Bailey," the Truman Capote squatting in Clint Howard's mouth finishes for him. The...thing invites them to sit down and be "comph-table." The away team hesitates, wondering if the lamé headband is actually covering up the "666" emblazoned on The Thing's skull. After further pressing, the team sits. Clint Howard's mouth is weird enough without the fake voice coming out of it! You'd think that with all the money Ron has, he'd at least cough up some orthodonture for his brother. The Thing presses a button, and from behind a damask-covered wall, a punch bowl and several glasses slide out. "This is tranya," Truman-Capote-Squatting-In-Clint-Howard's-Mouth explains, "I hope you relish it as much as I." Alcoholic beverages within easy access to the bed? That's Kirk's kind of bassinet. Ew! Ew! EW! I need to go soak my consciousness in OxyClean. I'm truly torn over what freaked me out more about this scene -- the fact that I have now watched this five times and still don't believe Clint Howard isn't a Cabbage Patch Kid, or the idea that The Thing has his tiny silver panty-hosed leg slung all seductive-like over a pink satin pillow. I mean, he knew Kirk was coming and he's posed like that? "Commander Balock," Kirk begins. "I know, I know a THOU-sand questions. But first, the tranya!" The Thing says. I think Clinty fouled up his line there -- his tongue flashed out weirdly when he said "tranya." But you know? It just adds to The Skeeving Flesh Factor.