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Star Trek: The Animated Series (S2)

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Star Trek: The Animated Series (S2)

#19 The Practical Joker

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Written by: Chuck Menville

Directed by: Hal Sutherland

Airdate: Sept. 21, 1974

Stardate: 3183.3

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Synopsis

While trying to escape from three Romulan warships, the U.S.S. Enterprise passes through a gaseous cloud that affects the Enterprise's computer and turns it into a dangerous practical joker.

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Guest Characters:

Romulan Commander Lou Scheimer

Romulan crewman Norm Prescott

Search party crewman James Doohan

Enterprise computer Majel Barrett

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Notes:

This episode had the interesting distinction of being the first appearance of a holodeck on any STAR TREK series. The Recreation room that Uhura, Sulu and McCoy go into had a control console in its center that allowed the user to specify what artificial environment was to be generated.

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This episode's writer, Chuck Menville, also wrote another animated STAR TREK episode "Once Upon a Planet". Chuck Menville also wrote for several other Filmation series from 1969 to 1976.

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This episode's story was quite similar to the seventh-season STAR TREK: The Next Generation episode "Emergence". In "Emergence", the U.S.S. Enterprise-D passed through a magnescopic storm, this caused the ship's computer to briefly exhibit an emergent intelligence. Coincidentally, the computer in that episode even made use of the holodeck to act out some of the facets of its new personality, and Troi, Worf and Data were trapped and endangered there for a time. Recall that in "The Practical Joker" the U.S.S. Enterprise computer trapped Uhura, Sulu and McCoy in the holographic Recreation Room and subjected them to dangerous weather and other pitfalls.

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I'm currently reading this one. I found books at my local library that put the TOS episodes and the animated series in story format. They're pretty cool to read. This one is absolutely funny in some parts.

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