Synopsis by Bruce Eder
The starship Enterprise arrives in orbit around a planet on the verge of collapse and finds the survey team working there dead, all seemingly having gone mad. Unbeknownst to anyone at the time, one member of the crew brings the cause of the insanity back aboard the starship with him. It spreads gradually, bringing hidden personality traits of its victims to the surface -- one man literally dies of a suicidal depression, while Sulu (George Takei) assumes the role of an 18th century swashbuckler, and Lt. Riley (Bruce Hyde) thinks himself the captain, locking himself in engineering and shutting down the Enterprise's engines, just as the planet begins its final destruction and starts pulling the ship out of orbit. Kirk and Spock both contract the disease and must wrestle with their personal demons, as they face the seemingly impossible task of restarting the ship's matter/anti-matter drive with only minutes before the Enterprise burns up in the atmosphere.
disease, exploration, space, space-exploration