On Star Trek: The Original Series

What Have You Done With Spock's Brain?!?

By Don DeBrandt

Logic is a little tweeting bird, chirping in a meadow. Logic is a wreath of pretty flowers–which smell bad.

–MR. SPOCK, “I, Mudd” (2-8)

Vulcans Are an Irrational Race.

They can’t help it. Neo-Beatles haircuts, Frodo ears and Joan Crawford eyebrows aside, this is a culture that holds that emotion should be rigidly held in check while pure, cold logic should be embraced–embraced in a stiff, overly formal hug, like two homophobic brothers-in-law saying goodbye for the first time, but embraced all the same.

This is a philosophy with admirable but unattainable goals. In many ways, feelings represent chaos itself: mercurial and unpredictable, the depth, intensity and complexity of emotions can manifest in an uncountable number of permutations and change from second to second. Anyone who’s run into his ex-spouse on the arm of the celebrity he’s been stalking while at a Baptist wedding reception for his adopted, transsexual half-sister and his best friend understands what I’m talking about…especially if you’re drunk enough, and can remember anything after the first punch was thrown.

Come. Let us reason together.

Mr. Spock, the best-known example of his species, is only half-Vulcan, which is probably why he demonstrates a sense of humor–an extremely sarcastic, deadpan sense of humor, but a sense of humor nonetheless. And it could be worse: what if it expressed itself in practical jokes, instead? (This was, in fact, the premise of a sketch once performed by the now-defunct Legend of Bonefish comedy troupe from Vancouver, B.C. You haven’t  …

More from Don DeBrandt

Stay Updated

on our daily essay, giveaways, and other special deals

Our Books

Subscribe via RSS