Star Trek – The Galileo Seven

★★★★ January 5, 1967 Season 1 Episode 16

If you want to see where we are…and you missed a few…HERE is a list of the episodes in my index located at the top of my blog.

This show was written by Oliver Crawford, Shimon Wincelberg, and Gene Roddenberry

This was the first episode that was centered around Spock and not Captain Kirk. Spock is in control of the shuttle that is stranded on a planet. The special effects people did a great job with the shuttle taking off into space. You would see this again in Star Wars a decade later.

Spock is in charge of the space shuttle Galileo.  Spock and the others aboard the shuttlecraft… crash land on an unexplored planet. With no sensors to find their crewmen, the Enterprise must figure out a way to locate the Galileo before its duty to deliver the medical supplies forces it to leave the crewmen for dead. Spock and company must survive on the planet’s surface, fending off the giant creatures that live there.

The Galileo Seven

As the story plays out, the crew is not enamored of Spock’s logical based decisions. It highlights the personality of Spock and shows us how Spock thinks. I can see why the crew would have problems with Spock. When one crewman is killed, they must take off in a hurry but the crew wants to bury the man first. Spock doesn’t see the logic in putting everyone at risk to do that…but in the end, allows it anyway. I can totally see his side but it seemed rather cold-blooded…or green-blooded in Spock’s case.

Spock’s rationale for wanting to leave a crew member behind to save others was the first instance in the series of his use of the Vulcan axiom regarding the needs of the many outweighing the needs of the few or the one. Spock’s ever calm logical manner does grate on the nerves of Dr. McCoy more than usual as well as crewman Don Marshall. DeForest Kelley’s scenes with Nimoy have even more bite than usual, not to mention an almost mutinous Marshall.

At the end of the episode… we are led to believe that Spock’s final action while in charge was an act of emotion rather than logic. For me… it seemed the most logical act of the episode.

From IMDB:

After this episode was filmed, no new shots of the shuttlecraft miniature were taken. All shuttlecraft model shots used in the series were stock footage from this episode, sometimes matted into different backgrounds. The shuttle craft was built by AMT in exchange for them gaining the rights to make the plastic model kit version.

It has been noted that the behavior of some of the personnel, particularly Lt. Boma, was grossly insubordinate to Spock for a quasi-military organization like Starfleet. By contrast, Spock’s act of jettisoning the fuel and igniting it, in hopes of the USS Enterprise detecting, it is perfectly keeping with military procedures and a completely logical decision under the dire circumstances the crew was facing.

The story was partly drawn from Spock’s break-out popularity that had already occurred early on in the show’s run. According to Leonard Nimoy, as a result, one writer simply suggested a story in which Spock was seen commanding a vessel.

To make the creatures look larger than they really were, small spear and shield props were made for Robert ‘Big Buck’ Maffei to fling at the crew. The one that is dropped near the three men is fairly small in size, but in the next shot, it is much larger.

The producers liked Don Marshall’s performance as Boma, and intended to bring the character back. However, by that time, Marshall was already signed with Irwin Allen to co-star in Land of the Giants (1968) (which began filming in 1967, but only premiered a year later).

The black rectangular instrument with the round face on the aft bulkhead of the shuttlecraft is actually a Foxboro controller, a device used in the wastewater industry to control the level of sewage in holding tanks.

The basic premise of “The Galileo Seven” is that a small ship is forced down onto an alien planet inhabited by giant humanoids. Don Marshall, who plays Lt. Boma, would soon star in another show called Land of the Giants (1968) where he plays the co-pilot of a small ship that is forced down onto an alien planet inhabited by giant humanoids.


A shuttlecraft under Mr. Spock’s command is forced to land on a hostile planet. His emotionless approach to command does not sit well with some crew members, particularly Mr. Boma who challenges Spock at every opportunity. The Enterprise and Captain Kirk meanwhile have only a short time to find the lost shuttlecraft as they must deliver urgent medical supplies to Markus III in only a few days


William Shatner … Captain James Tiberius ‘Jim’ Kirk
Leonard Nimoy … Mister Spock
Don Marshall … Boma
DeForest Kelley … Doctor Leonard ‘Bones’ McCoy
James Doohan … Lieutenant Commander Montgomery ‘Scotty’ Scott
George Takei … Lieutenant Hikaru Sulu
Nichelle Nichols … Lieutenant Nyota Uhura
John Crawford … Commissioner Ferris
Peter Marko … Gaetano
Phyllis Douglas … Yeoman Mears
Rees Vaughn … Latimer
Grant Woods … Kelowitz
Robert ‘Big Buck’ Maffei … Creature (as Buck Maffei)
David L. Ross … Transporter Chief (as David Ross)
Majel Barrett … Enterprise Computer (voice) (uncredited)
Bill Blackburn … Lieutenant Hadley (uncredited)
Frank da Vinci … Lt. Brent (uncredited)
Eddie Paskey … Lieutenant Leslie (uncredited)
Ron Veto … Crewman (uncredited)


Author: Badfinger (Max)

Power Pop fan, Baseball fan, old movie and tv show fan... and a songwriter, bass and guitar player.

8 thoughts on “Star Trek – The Galileo Seven”

  1. I’ve often felt comforted by Spock’s logic since my tumultuous adolescence. I would not want my crewmembers to risk their lives burying my dead body if it was absolutely certain I was dead. A little thing that annoys me in this episode is when, during a crisis in the shuttlecraft, the female crewmember plops down on the floor in a way that reminds me of a playful puppy – not at all brave or professional. Now, looking at the top photo, maybe they just liked that arrangement of the characters in the frame and didn’t know any other way to get her down there.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I agree about Spock’s logic and I thought his last action was very logical… when he jettison the fuel… they acted like it was an emotional decision but to me… logical because he had to do something to get the Enterprise to see them.

      She wasn’t as strong as some of the other Enterprise female crew members to me.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Looking back now, the sets were hokey compared to what the movies build now. Spock, don’t get no respect for his logic, which makes sense to most folks nowadays. Why did they not have Ann Francis on Star Trek? I guess she was busy with Honey West?

    Liked by 1 person

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