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written by Richard Matheson
FINAL DRAFT, dated May 3, 1966
report & analysis by Dave Eversole
additional explanation by Randy Landers, and original ending provided courtesy of Joe Arvin

Like a couple of others, this episode was shot about 99.9% as written. Many people give Shatner credit for the dramatic turn to face directly into the camera after the DOUBLE (this is how the character is referenced in stage direction and dialogue tags in the script) beams up.

Nope, Matheson describes it exactly as it was filmed.

And although it has long been reported that Leonard Nimoy devised the Vulcan Nerve Pinch as a nonviolent alternative to Matheson's call for Spock to "pistol-whip" the double into submission, this script does not exactly bear that out. Matheson's stage directions simply state that Spock "lunges from behind the generators and kayoes the double." Kayo is a phonetic pronunciation and spelling of the abbreviation "K.O." or "knock out." Matheson never states exactly how Spock kayoes him. Now perhaps director Penn wanted Nimoy to "phaser-whip" the double...at this late date we have no way to know.

The only difference I can detect is the switching of scenes in Act One. The televised end of Act One actually took place earlier in the act in Matheson's script.

In the original script, the dramatic moment of Rand's rape and Spock's subsequent "There's only one conclusion, we have an imposter aboard" is followed with the discovery that the transporter is creating opposites. Scotty's recommendation, "You don't dare beam up the landing party. If this should happen to a man..." and Kirk's "Oh my God" was to have been the end of Act One. Apparently it was decided by the director and editor as "not dramatic enough," and therefore the scenes were recut. So that Kirk and Spock go to the transporter room, learn the unit is malfunctioning, making "opposites," and then go to Sickbay where Spock suddenly announces "We have an imposter aboard!" Unfortunately, this doesn't make sense. He knows it's not an imposter; it's an opposite created by the transporter. To make matters worse, Act Two starts off in the transporter room with Kirk demanding explanations. You can read Blish's adaptation of the episode to see how the original script version plays better to the audience, or you can visit this link to a Albion Minzey video on YouTube which has the scenes in the proper order.

The director of the episode, the late Leo Penn, was known for resequencing dramatic scenes in other shows he directed, e.g. Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea and Lost in Space. If he thought there would be more drama if he reordered the scenes, he'd do it. Unfortunately with a professionally written script like Matheson's, he easily created problems.

MATHESON'S ORIGINAL ENDING

In Sickbay McCoy tells Kirk not to worry about the crew finding out about his dark side:

McCOY
The same thing would have happened to any one of us
who'd gone through the Transporter at that particular
time.  We all have an enemy within.
(beat; smiling)
It's the human condition.

Kirk smiles back and the doctor pats his arm, leaves to help his patients.  Kirk starts for the corridor.

INT. BRIDGE - MOVING SHOT - CLOSE ON KIRK

As he emerges from the elevator and moves to Mr. Spock who is at his customary place at the Library-Computer station.

SPOCK
Captain.

KIRK
I want to thank you, Mr. Spock.
I couldn't have made it without you.

SPOCK
(nods once)
What will you tell the crew?

KIRK
That the impostor was put back-
(pause; smiling)
- where he belongs.

JANICE'S VOICE
To die, Captain?

INCLUDING JANICE

JANICE
The... "impostor" told me what
really happened.

KIRK
(a little stunned)
Oh?

JANICE
And I just wanted to say that I
hope he hasn't died.

KIRK
(still off balance)
Why?

JANICE
Because he has some very interesting qualities.

She turns away, smiling cooly.  Kirk stares after, then looks at Spock who clears his throat and moves off.  Repressing a smile, Kirk goes to his chair, sits.  Briefly, he savors the moment, then flicks on his Communicator.

KIRK
(with full authority)
This is the Captain speaking.

EXT. SPACE - FULL SHOT - U.S.S. ENTERPRISE

As it moves off into the night of stars.

FADE OUT.

THE END

Wow!  Hmm.... okay.

Well, honestly, there are as many different appetites as there are adults in the world.  We're all different, and what one person finds dirty and disgusting is the next gal's cup of coffee, tea or me.  Still, it is rather off-putting to hear Janice seemingly say that she hoped the "man" who assaulted her was still alive within Kirk, but not as off-putting as having Spock leer it to her like a proverbial dirty old man.

As a friend of mine put it when I told him of the original ending -- "Matheson was going for Sleeping With The Enemy Within."


RICHARD MATHESON (1926- ): Simply put, Matheson is the most accomplished writer ever to pen an episode of Star Trek. His short stories, novels, films and teleplays are too numerous to mention, but highlights include the short story "Born of Man and Woman" (his first sale), his novels The Incredible Shrinking Man, I Am Legend, Bid Time Return and What Dreams May Come, multiple episodes of The Twilight Zone and Amazing Stories, and the films The Night Stalker, The Night Strangler and The Legend of Hell House. Matheson's famous telefilm, Duel, was the first full length piece Steven Spielberg ever directed. Even as he passes the age of 80, he has no less than four films in various stages of production. "The Enemy Within" was, alas, his only sale to Star Trek. Perhaps if the episode had not been butchered in the editing process, he would have contributed more.

More on Matheson can be found at http://www.tor.com/sites/what_dreams/matheson.html


 

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