In this episode of Trekking Through Compliance, we consider the episode Day of the Dove which aired on November 1, 1968, Star Date unknown.

Story Synopsis

Called to Earth colony Beta 12A by a distress signal which claims that the colony is under attack by a ship, Kirk and his landing party find no traces of the 100 men, women, and children who inhabited the colony. Kirk’s suspicions of Klingon involvement seem confirmed when the Enterprise detects the approach of a Klingon battlecruiser. Strangely, however, the cruiser is disabled and heavily damaged.

Klingon Commander Kang and his landing party then beam down and subdue the Enterprise’s landing party, accusing the Enterprise of attacking and killing 400 Klingons aboard his ship. He demands that Kirk beam the Klingon landing party up to the Enterprise. Meanwhile, Kirk accuses Kang of destroying the colonists of 12A. Chekov attempts to attack the Klingons, accusing them of attacking and killing the members of a Federation outpost on which his brother Pyoter was stationed–despite the fact that he has no brother.

Kirk pretends to comply with Kang’s order after Chekov is tortured, but actually warns Spock by pressing a special button on his communicator. Scott then holds the Klingons in transit until security guards can cover the transporter room. Kang and his landing party are then beamed aboard and taken prisoner along with the rest of the Klingon crew who have been beamed to the Enterprise from their stricken ship. Soon thereafter, the Enterprise spontaneously accelerates to Warp 9 and traps all but 38 crew members below deck.

When Kirk confronts Kang and accuses him of being responsible for the trapping of the Enterprise’s crew, phasers and room ornaments turn into swords. Thus armed, the Klingons escape and take control of engineering. Their attempt to cut off life support to the bridge is foiled, however, when normal functioning returns for no apparent reason.

Meanwhile, Spock has ascertained that there is an unfamiliar alien life force aboard. After watching the crew of the Enterprise and the Klingons turn at each other throats, seeing Chekov seeking revenge for the death of his non-existent brother Pyoter at the hands of the Klingons, as well as attempting to rape Kang’s wife, and observing that fatal wounds are mysterious healing, Kirk realizes that the alien is influencing matter and human and Klingon behavior, somehow deriving sustenance from violent emotions they experience.

Kirk and Mara use intra-ship beaming to pass through the Klingon defenses. With the help of Mara, and after fighting Kang in a sword battle which ultimately involves all Klingons and Enterprise crew members, Kirk eventually convinces Kang to cease hostilities and participate in temporary gestures of goodwill. These drive the creature away, returning control to Kirk.

Fun Fact

From a comment by USS Surefoot on “You made an interesting and thought provoking point in your podcast about this episode, where you questioned whether the bigoted, terrible behavior from the characters we know and love was the result of mind control from Sparky, or whether it was dredged up from deep within their civilized psyches. I’d like to think it was mind control, but I know that’s just wishful thinking. Scratch the surface of even the 23rd Century man, and the savage will react.”

Compliance Takeaways:

  1. How to use disruption as an innovation.
  2. Integrating compliance into the business.
  3. Hitting the ground running as a new CCO.


Excruciatingly Detailed Plot Summary by Eric W. Weisstein for Day of the Dove of the Dove