Star Trek (1966–1969)
19 user 7 critic

Errand of Mercy 

With a war with Klingons raging, Kirk and Spock attempt to resist an occupation of a planet with incomprehensibly placid natives.


John Newland


Gene L. Coon, Gene Roddenberry (created by)

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Episode complete credited cast:
William Shatner ... Capt. Kirk
Leonard Nimoy ... Mr. Spock
John Abbott ... Ayelborne
John Colicos ... Kor
George Takei ... Sulu
Nichelle Nichols ... Uhura
Peter Brocco ... Claymare
Victor Lundin ... Lieutenant
David Hillary Hughes David Hillary Hughes ... Trefayne
Walt Davis Walt Davis ... Klingon Soldier
George Sawaya George Sawaya ... Second Soldier


War! The Klingons and the Federation are poised on the brink, and then war is declared. Kirk and Spock visit the planet Organia. Organia, inhabited by simple pastoral folk, lies on a tactical corridor likely to be important in the coming conflict. Whichever side controls the planet has a significant advantage. But the Organians are a perplexing people, apparently unconcerned by the threat of the Klingon occupation or even the deaths of others in their community. Finally, Kirk and the Klingon commander Kor learn why, and the reason will change Federation/Klingon relations for decades to come. Written by CommanderBalok

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Release Date:

23 March 1967 (USA) See more »

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Did You Know?


Popularly known as "The Vietnam Story", for its obvious allusions to Vietnam and its abuse by the colonial powers. See more »


Although Spock observes that Organia is a "a primitive society" which is "totally stagnant" and making no progress toward mechanization, neither Spock nor Kirk appears to notice that the doors to the Organian council chamber open and close by themselves when someone approaches. There is no evidence of any Organian opening or closing the doors. See more »


Kor: We are similar as a species. Here we are on a planet of sheep, two tigers, predators, hunters... killers. And it is precisely that which makes us great. And there is a universe to be taken.
Captain James T. Kirk: It's a very large universe, Commander, full of people who don't like the Klingons.
Kor: Excellent. Then it shall be a matter of testing each other's wills, and power. Survival must be earned, Captain.
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Alternate Versions

Special Enhanced version Digitally Remastered with new exterior shots and remade opening theme song See more »


Referenced in Star Trek: Enterprise: Observer Effect (2005) See more »


Theme From Star Trek
Written by Alexander Courage
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User Reviews

"What happens in space is not your business..."
7 February 2012 | by BlueghostSee all my reviews

Sayeth Kor, the Klingon garrison commander of Organia. Colicos has the most memorable lines in this episode; commenting on everything from being touched to the glory of the Klingon Empire.

The Klingons, as originally written in the Star Trek bible, were a riff on the Communist Chinese, seen from a social dynamic as one being economically aggressive at one time in history, only to have fallen from grace and embrace the share-and-share-alike servitude from Marx's mind. The Klingon Empire is described as being a military dictatorship. The Klingons are the self proclaimed conquerors of space (or will be anyway), and Organia being in the disputed region, it is one of the first planets to fall into the fray.

Kirk and Spock take it upon themselves to show the primitives how they can resist the tyranny of Klingon occupation. Kor protests and takes action.

But there's a twist here. The battlefield that would be, one inhabited by the primitives of a far flung world, has a secret that the warring parties will discover.

It's a bit of a condescending episode in terms of what causes international conflict, and on the same vein rather naive. There's a real ivory tower perspective on the part of the author of this particular episode as he imparts his personal wisdom and outlook on why countries war with one another.

But, there it is. Opposing sides stare one another in the face, ready to annihilate life on a planetary scale when something happens. There's an admonishment from an over-bearing school teacher with all of the common sense of a PTA mother who utters inane phrases to her children after they've been bullied. The concept was to show how ridiculous the exercise would be, and the bloodshed as a result.

This episode is a reflection the face between the then so called First and Second World powers, with the Third World caught in the middle. It is an unexpected twist from the Third World representative that we get the PTA mother for the episode.

As such the action in this episode is confined to Star Fleet's executive officers hailing from the U.S.S. Enterprise, our vessel and home for our favorite TV show.

The highlight is seeing Star Fleet's finest pitted against the best the Klingon Empire has to offer. Who wins? You be the judge.


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