Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
Turnabout Intruder is a third season episode of Star Trek: The Original Series, first broadcast June 3, 1969. It is episode #79, written by Arthur H. Singer , based on a story by Gene Roddenberry, and directed by Herb Wallerstein .
It was the final episode of the original series to air.
Quick Overview: Kirk becomes trapped in the body of a woman bent on killing him and taking over his command under his guise.
On stardate 5298.5, the USS Enterprise rushes to answer a distress call from the planet Camus II, the site of an archaeological expedition that is exploring ancient ruins of a long vanished culture. Upon arrival, the landing party finds three survivors; among them are Dr. Janice Lester and Dr. Arthur Coleman. It is revealed that during their academy days, Dr. Lester and Captain Kirk were intimately involved, however Lester's inability to to achieve command of a starship, which she jealously blames was inhibited by her gender, caused the two to drift apart.
Medical scans reveal that the survivors are suffering from radiation exposure which threatens their lives. Dr. Coleman, Mr. Spock and Dr. McCoy go off to tend to the other survivors leaving Lester and Kirk alone for a moment to talk. Kirk finds Lester has been driven to the point of madness by her personality complex and complains about the agony of being a woman in a male dominated existence. She traps Kirk in an alien device which can swap the personalities between two individuals. Joining Kirk in the machine, Lester's essence is transferred into Kirk's body while Kirk's mind enters hers. Now as Kirk, Lester tries to strangle her former body which Kirk is trapped inside.
Spock and McCoy return before Lester can finish her evil deed and she (as Kirk) orders the landing party and the remaining survivors back to the Enterprise. Once there, Lester excuses McCoy as chief medical officer and replaces him with her partner, Dr. Coleman. McCoy protests the decision informing his captain that Coleman is known to have been ruled as incompetent to serve aboard a starship by the Starfleet surgeon general, but the captain doesn't listen and dismisses him.
Alone, Coleman and Lester privately converse about their sinister plans. It is revealed that the two are in love with each other and had planned to have their personnel killed in order to lure the Enterprise to Camus II. Lester has now achieved her lifelong goal of commanding a starship. Likewise, Coleman has now been given a chance to become a starship's chief medical officer.
Lester charges Coleman to make sure that Kirk, who is still trapped inside Lester's female body, stays out of the way by sedating him, but Kirk manages to escape and goes to McCoy and Mr. Spock for help. He finds Lester there however, as McCoy has decided to invoke his authority to override his captain's orders and perform a full medical examination. Kirk tries to expose Lester as a fraud but Lester orders the hysterical woman to be taken into custody and put into isolation.
Kirk is taken away, and Spock becomes suspicious when Lester orders a course change to the Benecia Colony to drop off Dr. Lester for medical attention, and ignores their previous mission; to rendezvous with the USS Potemkin at Beta Aurigae. While the fake Kirk is preoccupied with McCoy's ordered examination, Spock sneaks away to see Lester where he mind melds with her, and discovers the truth that she is indeed Captain Kirk.
Spock tries to free Lester but is stopped by a security team led by the impostor Kirk. Kirk accuses Spock of mutiny and immediately orders a court martial. Once on trial, Spock tries to make a convincing case that Captain Kirk is really in the body of Dr. Lester, and that the physical Kirk is an impostor.
Shocked by the incredible story, McCoy and Mr. Scott converse secretly in the corridor about their Captain's true identity and having witnessed Kirk's irrational behavior and hostility toward Dr. Lester, they decide to agree with Spock. The conversation is eavesdropped by Lester however, who then orders McCoy, Scotty, Spock and Kirk (in her former body) arrested for treason. Their punishment will be death.
The remaining crew quickly turn against their captain when they realize that he isn't himself and refuse to obey his orders. Eventually, Kirk and Lester have a temporary reversion of minds. Witnessing this, Coleman tells Lester that in order to make the transfer permanently, she must kill her former self while Kirk still occupies the body.
The two head to Lester's holding cell, but are unable to carry out the task as Kirk and Lester revert again. This time Lester is too late, and the transfer is permanent. Captain Kirk is finally himself again. The hysterical Lester makes one last attempt to kill Kirk but fails, and Lester and Coleman are taken into custody. Coleman then pleads with Kirk to allow him to care for his mentally deranged love, and Kirk decides that they will be dropped off at Starbase 2 to face charges. In the meantime the Enterprise resumes its current mission with the Potemkin.
The contents of this article is licensed from www.wikipedia.org under the GNU Free Documentation License. Click here to see the transparent copy and copyright details