"Charlie X" was the 7th episode of Star Trek: The Original Series, in the show's first season, first aired on 15 September 1966. The episode was written by Gene Roddenberry and D.C. Fontana, directed by Lawrence Dobkin and novelized under the title "Charlie's Law" in Star Trek 1 by James Blish.

The cargo ship USS Antares transfers 17-year old Charles ("Charlie") Evans to the USS Enterprise on his way to Colony 5 from the planet Thasus. The Antares is mysteriously destroyed and Enterprise crew members disappear. Captain James T. Kirk realizes that Charlie is responsible but has no control over his deadly god-like powers.

Summary[edit | edit source]

The Enterprise.

Captain's log, stardate 1533.6 
Now maneuvering to come alongside cargo vessel Antares. Its captain and first officer are beaming over to us with an unusual passenger.

The Enterprise is meeting the cargo ship USS Antares so they can transport a young teenage boy, Charles "Charlie" Evans, whom they discovered while surveying the planet Thasus. Charlie beams over to the Enterprise with Captain Ramart of the Antares, and the ship's navigator and first officer, Tom Nellis. Unknown to the Enterprise crew, Charlie has god-like powers. He does not inform Captain Kirk of his powers and is also influencing Ramart and Nellis, preventing them from informing Kirk of this. Charlie is supposed to transfer to the Enterprise, which is on route to Colony 5, where, ultimately, he will stay with relatives.

Nyota Uhura.

Captain's log, stardate 1533.7 
We have taken aboard an unusual passenger for transport to Colony Alpha V. Charles Evans, the sole survivor of a transport crash fourteen years ago. The child, alone from age 3, has not only survived, but has grown to intelligent, healthy adolescence.

After being away from all Human contact for so many years, Charlie begins to learn and integrate. Being a teenager, Charlie is also struggling with puberty and develops his first crush on the beautiful Yeoman Janice Rand. In one of the ship's recreation rooms, he secretly silences Lieutenant Nyota Uhura, who is singing, so that he can have all of Rand's undivided attention.

James T. Kirk.

Later, when Charlie is on the bridge, Captain Ramart tries to contact the Enterprise to warn them of Charlie's dangerous powers, but the Antares is secretly destroyed by Charlie before they can get a message off.

Captain's log, stardate 1535.8 
UESPA headquarters notified of the mysterious loss of science probe vessel Antares.

Spock.

Yeoman Rand eventually introduces Charlie to a girl his own age—Yeoman Third Class Tina Lawton. Charlie immediately snubs Tina and confides to Rand his feelings for her. Rand realizes Charlie's crush is becoming difficult for her and discusses the issue with Captain Kirk, who takes pity on Charlie and attempts to befriend him. Kirk takes Charlie to the gym for some self-defense exercises. After sparring with Kirk, Charlie falls down, which prompts laughter from Sam, one of Kirk's sparring partners. Feeling hurt and humiliated, Charlie makes Sam "disappear"—finally revealing his god-like powers. Ultimately, Charlie admits to destroying the Antares. Soon, Spock suspects that Charlie might be a Thasian, a race of non-corporeal, psionically-powerful beings, rumored to have lived on the planet ages ago.

The crew.

Charlie begins to take control of the Enterprise at different levels. Attempts to stop him fail, so he wreaks mayhem on some of the crew. He turns Tina Lawton into an iguana, a young female crewwoman into an old lady, and makes Yeoman Rand "disappear" after Kirk and Spock try to rescue her from Charlie's influences.

The crew.

Determined to stop Charlie before they reach Colony 5, Kirk tries to overload his powers by activating different systems on the ship all at once. Then, he attempts to physically subdue Charlie. During the midst of this struggle with Charlie, an object suddenly appears alongside the ship. A translucent, floating human-like face appears on the bridge. The voice from the face informs the bridge that it is a Thasian, the powerful psionic beings Spock believed still existed. The Thasian states that it had taken its form centuries ago so that it might communicate with Humans. The Thasians provided Charlie with psionic powers so he could survive. Thasians have the power to transfer psionic ability to other beings. Once they have done this, they either cannot or will not remove this power. Captain Kirk then suggests that Charlie belongs with humans and recommends that he might be trained not to use his psionic powers. The Thasian replies that "We gave him the power so he could live. He will use it—always". Since it would be impossible for Charlie to live a normal life amongst humans, the Thasians "transport" him to their ship and inform the Enterprise bridge that they will continue to care for him. The Thasians depart peacefully without incident.

References[edit | edit source]

Characters[edit | edit source]

Episode characters[edit | edit source]

Robert AbramsClifford Brent (?) • Charles EvansSam FullerBill HadleyHarrisonJames T. KirkTina LawtonRyan LeslieLeonard McCoyTom NellisRamartJanice RandMontgomery ScottSpockHikaru SuluNyota UhuraVinci (?) • WilsonThasianunnamed 2260s USS Enterprise personnel
Referenced only 
the Evans family

Novelization characters[edit | edit source]

Sam EllisCharles EvansJames T. KirkRamartJanice RandSpockNyota UhuraThasian
Referenced only 
Tina Lawton • the Evans family

Starships and vehicles[edit | edit source]

Antares (Antares-class transport) • USS Enterprise (Constitution-class heavy cruiser) • Thasian ship
Referenced only 
unnamed Federation civilian starships (The Evans' Federation research vessel)

Locations[edit | edit source]

the galaxy's Alpha or Beta Quadrant
Referenced only 
Alpha V colony/Colony FiveEarth (England) • VulcanThasus

Shipboard locales[edit | edit source]

USS Enterprise
bridgequarters (Rand's) • transporter roomgymnasiumdetention cellrec room

Races and cultures[edit | edit source]

Human (Bantu) • ThasianVulcan

States and organizations[edit | edit source]

United Earth Space Probe Agency/StarfleetUnited Federation of Planetssecurity division

Technology and weapons[edit | edit source]

baffle plateenergy pileintercomNerst generator (novelization only) • force fieldrecord tapeintercomlibrary computermemory bankphaserphaser pistolsensorstarshipsubspace transmitterviewscreentransportertype-2 phaser

Materials and substances[edit | edit source]

atmospheregasoxygen

Ranks and titles[edit | edit source]

captainchief engineerchief medical officercommandercommanding officercommunications officerdoctorengineerFederation Starfleet ranksFederation Starfleet ranks (2260s)first officergovernorhelmsmanlieutenantlieutenant commandermedical practitionernavigatorofficerscientistscience officersecond officership's surgeonyeoman

Other references[edit | edit source]

anatomybeamingBonesbootcaptain's logcaptain's log, USS Enterprise, 2266chessclothingFederation coloniesfive-year missiongovernmenthomeworldhumanoidjumpsuitlanguagelifeformlog entrylogicmattermemorynation-statenon-corporeal speciespantsplanetquadrantraces and culturesrankroseSaurian brandysolitairespacestarstar systemstardateStarfleet uniformStarfleet uniform (2260s)technologyThanksgivingtitlethree-dimensional chesstunic • "The Tyger" • uniformuniverseVictorianVulcan lutecarrier wave • "Charlie's law" • duty rosterEnglish languageperfumeplaying cardrosebudsolitaireVictorian Ageweapon

Chronology[edit | edit source]

years prior to 2266 
The Evans' ship crashes on Thasus. (prior to episode/novelization)
stardate 1533.6, 2266 (2260s chronology, 2264–2270 Enterprise voyages
Enterprise and Antares rendezvous.

Appendices[edit | edit source]

Related media[edit | edit source]

Adaptations[edit | edit source]

Video releases[edit | edit source]

Background[edit | edit source]

The Antares as depicted in the remastered edition of this episode

Images[edit | edit source]

Episode images[edit | edit source]

Adaptation images[edit | edit source]

Timeline[edit | edit source]

published order
Previous episode:
The Naked Time
TOS episode produced Next episode:
Balance of Terror
Previous episode:
The Man Trap
TOS episode aired Next episode:
Where No Man Has Gone Before
Previous story:
first story in book
Star Trek 1
Blish1.jpg
Next story:
Dagger of the Mind
chronological order
Previous Adventure:
Where Sea Meets Sky
Chapters 1 & 31
The Captain's Table
Pocket Next Adventure:
Elegy for Charlie
Star Trek: The New Voyages 2
Previous Adventure:
Past Prologue
The Janus Gate
Voyages of the
USS Enterprise (NCC-1701)
(2264 to 2270)
Next Adventure:
Elegy for Charlie
Star Trek: The New Voyages 2


External link[edit | edit source]

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