11. "Spock Amok" (season 1, episode 5)
"Spock Amok" lands at number 11 out of 13 in this episode ranking, and there are a few reasons why this episode, while fun, doesn't quite hit the higher marks of its peers. This episode takes us on a fun ride into the comedic side of the Star Trek universe, a tricky terrain that requires a delicate balance. It's a light-hearted installment that explores Spock's personal life, especially his relationship with his fiancee T'Pring, in a way that's more slapstick than the usual Star Trek fare. Yes, I did just say Spock has a fiancee.
The episode hilariously features a soul-swapping ritual gone wrong, leading to some comical but also somewhat out-of-character moments. While the humor is welcome and legitimately funny, it contrasts sharply with the typical tone of the series, which tends to lean more toward drama and adventure with philosophical undertones. But hey, it doesn't hurt to laugh once in a while - and Spock learns to just roll with the punches.
The biggest thing is that "Spock Amok" is a bit of a detour from the main storyline of Strange New Worlds. It truly feels like a standalone episode, more focused on entertaining the audience with a quirky situation than driving the larger narrative forward. This isn't a bad thing at all, as it takes us on a deeper exploration of Vulcan culture and Spock's struggle with his dual heritage. However, compared to other episodes that effectively combine character development with plot advancement, "Spock Amok" seems to prioritize comedy over substance.
It's honestly a ridiculously fun watch, especially for those who enjoy seeing a different side of the usually stoic Spock, but it doesn't quite reach the same depth or emotional resonance as some of the top-ranked episodes in the series.