Written by / 11/05/2013 / No comments / , , , , ,

STAR TREK 'WHERE NO MAN HAS GONE BEFORE' GARY LOCKWOOD

year: 1966 cast: William Shatner, Gary Lockwood, Sally Kellerman, Leonard Nimoy rating: ****
From the onset of the STAR TREK episode WHERE NO MAN HAS GONE BEFORE, Gary Lockwood, as Lieutenant Commander Gary Mitchell, an Academy buddy of Captain Kirk, had something about him that grabbed the screen. Not an easy thing to do when competing with William Shatner, who, for better or worse, always demands attention.

Mitchell sits in front of Kirk on the bridge as the Enterprise enters a strange force field. A lovely blond Dr Denher, played by a young Sally Kellerman, is also present. When flashes of light blast the bridge, Mitchell and Denher zapped by electric charges. All the scientific plotlines aside – including a newly discovered recording device in the prologue – things get strange when Mitchell’s eyes turn a ghostly gray color. As he recuperates in the medical room, he’s able to lift objects into mid air, change channels on the bedside monitor, and can memorize poems at a mere glance: like a selection of this sonnet titled NIGHTINGALE WOMAN (written years before by Gene Roddenberry about a war plane): "My love has wings, slender, feathered things with grace in upswept curve, and tapered tip."
Gary Lockwood as Lieutenant Mitchell
One particularly chilling moment, as Mitchell looks directly into the camera viewed by Kirk and Spock on the bridge, is right out of a classic horror film. Lockwood exhibits not only the facial expressions of a man with special powers that grow progressively intense with each scene, but his arms, hanging down slightly behind his back, provide a primitive, zombie-like posture: a controlled yet formidable trance and there’s just no stopping him.

The episode’s suspenseful climax has Kirk placing Mitchell and Dehner on a dead planet. Mitchell can read minds and knows he’s being abandoned; since his powers have excelled to an almost god-like manner, imagine what he’ll be capable of very soon.
The planet Delta Vega that runs by itself, no work unions... this is a great looking matte painting
Andrea Dromm with Gary Lockwood
So as Mitchell and Dehner, with belated powers of her own, turn the petrified surface into their own personal Eden, Kirk has only one choice. Torn to kill his old friend, who had saved his life in a former mission, the Captain has a real challenge.

Gary Lockwood starred in Gene Roddenberry's THE LIEUTENANT in 1963
The battle between Kirk and Mitchell is one of the greatest man-to-man fights from the original series: no lizard costumes required. Not only does Gary Lockwood, who’d later play Dr. Frank Poole, the doomed astronaut in Stanley Kubrick’s 2001: A SPACE ODYSSEY, prove his worth as an actor-in-demand, but William Shatner merits the physical prowess as a commander facing death, matching the cerebral traits of his character in previous episodes.

Remember, at this point Shatner hadn’t been Kirk for very long. Perhaps WHERE NO MAN HAS GONE BEFORE was important in cementing that famously macho persona that would last three legendary television seasons, six motion pictures – and beyond.
"Don't listen to him... his eyes light up and... he... can't... be... trusted."
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