Grappling with an enemy, in one way or another, is a staple of Star Trek. Whether it’s wrestling with Gorn in the middle of the desert, scrimmaging with Q in Quark’s Bar, or confronting a horror tentacle monster in the Voyager corridors with a phaser rifle, every now and then, a physical contest rises up.
Bare knuckles and sharply traded insults could sometimes replace the stoic and reasonable Starfleet Officer, and at some point, every crew has come to the edge of the mat, slipped on those knuckle-dusters, and set about for a good barroom brawl.
We’ve seen some magnificent fight scenes on-screen (Archer and Shran going toe to toe with an Ushaan-tor will always be a top favourite of mine) as well as some unintentionally hilarious slap fights like Kirk versus the Gorn Captain, where tickling looked like it was a priority, and did that rock really weigh as much as it looked? I know I’ll be trying out a double-hand punch in the future.
Whether you’ve got Kirk using an Andorian as a springboard, or Sisko punching the lights out of Q (“Picard never hit me!”), throughout our loveable Star Trek history, there are plenty of fights to choose from. Legendary as they are, the fight scenes between starships couldn’t match up to the glorious gladiatorial battles taking place in a personal area, going head to head, knuckle to knuckle, in a struggle for the survival of the fittest.
Or, just survive until next week’s episode.
In your opinion, which is the best on-screen gladiator battle we’ve seen?