“The Tholian Web”
Written by Judy Burns
and Chet Richards
Directed by Herb Wallerstein,
Ralph Senensky (uncredited)
Season 3, Episode 9
Production episode 3x9
Original air date: November 15, 1968
Recap: David Mack
The Enterprise nears the last known position of the vanished starship U.S.S. Defiant, which has been missing for three weeks in “unsurveyed territory.” Spock reports unusual sensor readings: space itself appears to be “breaking up,” a phenomenon he cannot explain. As if that alone isn’t sufficient cause for alarm, Scotty warns that there is a slow, continuing, and inexplicable loss of power from the Enterprise’s warp engines.
Chekov sights an object dead ahead: a green-glowing spectre, a ghostly twin of the Enterprise that barely registers at all on sensors. It’s the Defiant, adrift in space and not taking Uhura’s calls.
Dressed like walking electric shavers, a landing party consisting of Kirk, Spock, Chekov, and Doctor McCoy beams over to the crippled Starfleet vessel. They materialize on the Defiant’s bridge to find it deserted except for two corpses: that of the Defiant’s captain, and the man whose hands are locked around the dead skipper’s broken neck.