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"The Time Trap" was the 12th episode of Star Trek: The Animated Series in the show's first season, aired during the week of 24 November 1973. The episode was written by Joyce Perry, directed by Hal Sutherland and novelized in Log Four by Alan Dean Foster.


VHS teaser
The USS Enterprise pursues a Klingon vessel into an area of the galaxy known as the Delta Triangle — and both ships disappear in to a sector where time stands still.


Log entries

Captain's log, stardate 52[67].2.
We have just entered the Delta Triangle, a vast, uninhabited sector of our galaxy in which a high number of mysterious disappearances of starships have been recorded since ancient times. The Enterprise has been assigned the mission of surveying this area, and if possible, determining the cause of these disappearances.
Captain's log, supplemental. First Officer Spock recording.
We appear to be in an alternate universe. Position, undetermined. Captain Kirk has been transported from the ship by an unknown power. His present location also is undetermined.
Captain's log, stardate 5267.6.
We are in the final stages preparatory to making our escape from Elysia. We must make our escape by tomorrow, or our dilithium crystals will be too depleted and we will be trapped here forever.



Episode characters

Arex Na EthBellDevnaFrank GablerGlindKaliKazKelthosJames T. KirkKor, son of RynarKuriMagenLeonard McCoyMontgomery ScottSpockHikaru SuluNyota UhuraXeriusunnamed Klingons

Novelization characters

Arex Na EthBellDevnaFrank GablerKaasKaliJames T. KirkKor, son of RynarKuriMeganLeonard McCoyRodinoMontgomery ScottSpockHikaru SuluNyota UhuraXeriusunnamed Klingons
Referenced only
Amanda GraysonJenkinsKanffJohn KyleMcTavish

Starships and vehicles

SS Bonaventure (12081NCC) • USS Enterprise (Constitution-class heavy cruiser) • IKS Klothos (Klolode-class battlecruiser) • unnamed D7 class starshipsunnamed Alpha and Beta Quadrant starships


Episode locations

Delta TriangleElysia
Referenced only

Novelization locations

Delta TriangleElysia
Referenced only
Earth (China) • Mount OlympusOmega CynaOrionTerratinVerdantin

Races and cultures

AndorianBerikazinCygnianGornHuman (Scottish) • KlingonKzintiOrionPhylosianRomulanTallerineTellariteEdosian or TriexianVulcanunnamed races and cultures

States and organizations

Elysian CouncilFederationKlingon Imperial HeadquartersStarfleet AcademyStarfleet Command

Science and technology

astrogation computerastrophysicschronometercloaking devicecombination toolcommandercomputerdeflector shielddetectordilithium storage tankdisposal nichedisruptorengineintercomlibrary computerlife supportmain computermicrocircuitmicrotapenavigation beaconphaserphaser welderphysicsS-2 graf unitscannersensorspectrographsubspace radiotransporterturboliftviewscreenwarp drive

Materials and substances

cellceramic-metal alloydilithiumgemstonehaggismetalozoneplasticwood

Units of measurement

centurydaydecadehourkuvitminutesecondsectorwarp factor (warp sixwarp sevenwarp eight) • year

Ranks and titles

captainchief engineercrewmemberdoctorengineerFederation Starfleet ranks (2260s)first officergunnerhelmsmanlieutenantlieutenant commanderminernavigatorprofessorrankscience officersecond engineersecurity guardsenior officerspeakerStarfleet rankstechnicianwarrior

Other references

alert status (battle stationsred alertyellow alert) • alternate universeassignment patchatmospherebannerbrainbridgebriefing roomcaptain's log, USS Enterprise, 2269catcommunicationscomputer roomconfederationconstellationcoordinatesdancingdiplomacydrumelectricityelephantengineeringeyef'korrgalaxygodgovernmentgraveyardgravityhandshakehullimmortalityKalusian sand serpentkhaba dej'librarylog entrylogicmalachite tree vipermammalmuseummusicnation-statenightmarepeacepocket universepokerpsychokinesisquartersrabbitraces and culturesspacespace-timestarbaseStarfleet uniformStarfleet uniform (2265-2270)telepathytentacletimetreatyuniversewar




  • Alan Dean Foster seated the Elysian Council members in a different order than they appeared in the aired episode, and its composition was slightly different. He included Berikazin and Tallerine representatives, along with an Edoan, while not mentioning an Andorian or Tellarite, and clarified that three of the representatives were from races unknown to the Federation. Gorn was spelled Gorin.
  • When describing Elysia, Leonard McCoy mentioned the fable of an elephant graveyard, and was surprised when Spock got the reference. This was a trope of fiction, seen in stories such as Walt Disney's The Lion King. (Elephant Graveyard article at All the Tropes)
  • Spock mentioned that his mother enjoyed reading Earth fantasy novels and that he read the books as well. Their shared interest was also brought up in "Once Upon a Planet".
  • Devna danced sensuously to impressionistic music during the party, a performance that was only hinted at in the episode.
  • Kaz started a fight with McCoy as a distraction for Kali, whereas an unidentified male Klingon did it in the episode. In each case, it was instigated by saying Kali was "my woman". Set one year later, TOS novel: The Tears of the Singers revealed that Kali would marry Kor.
  • Kor reported to the Klingon High Command that he'd successfully destroyed the Enterprise, having been too far away to see that the sabotage attempt failed, whereas in the episode he realized it immediately and instead took credit for their mutual escape.

Related stories

An almost identical mission was experienced in: -

The Elysian Council reappeared in: -

Limbo worlds were seen again in: -

'S.S. Bonaventure' [or a replica] was seen in: -

Devna appeared in: -

Kor appeared in: -

Kali, Kaz and Kuri appeared in: -

Kzinti appeared in: -

Gorn appeared in: -

Early Federation Starfleet uniforms were seen in: -

Female pre-24th century Klingons appeared in: -


published order
Previous episode:
The Magicks of Megas-Tu
TAS episode produced Next episode:
The Slaver Weapon
Previous episode:
Mudd's Passion
TAS episode aired Next episode:
The Terratin Incident
Previous story:
The Terratin Incident
Log Four
Log four.jpg
Next story:
More Tribbles, More Troubles
chronological order
Previous Adventure:
The Terratin Incident
Memory Beta Chronology Next Adventure:
Where Time Stands Still (backstory)
Previous Adventure:
The Terratin Incident
Pocket Next Adventure:
Where Time Stands Still (backstory)


External links