[[quoteright:320:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/amok_time_5381.jpg]]
[[caption-width-right:320:''"As it was in the dawn of our days, as it is today, as it will be for all tomorrows, I make my choice. This one.''"]]

[floatboxright:
Series:Series/{{Star Trek The Original Series}}\\
Episode: Season 2, Episode 1\\
Title:"Amok Time"\\
Previous: Operation Annihilate\\
Next: Who Mourns For Adonais\\
Recapper: Synjo Deonecros]

We start off with [=McCoy=] catching Kirk on his rounds to talk about how un-Vulcanlike Spock's been, for the past couple of days. Kirk at first dismisses [=McCoy=]'s worries as being nothing...until another ill-fated attempt by Nurse Chapel to gain his eye causes Spock to throw a temper tantrum, catching everyone by surprise. Unfortunately, the green-blooded primadonna refuses to let in on what's causing him to PMS, only firmly [[strike:demanding]] requesting leave on his home planet.

Nothing doing, though; the ''Enterprise'' is on its way to represent the Federation at the crowning ceremony for the new ruler of Altair VI, which has been bumped up by a few days - nowhere near enough time for a detour to Vulcan. Spock, however, won't take "no" for an answer, and defies orders to head to Vulcan, anyway, forcing Kirk to order him to [=McCoy=]'s for a checkup to see just what the hell is wrong with him. And what's wrong, is that his PMS is killing him!

No, I'm not kidding; it turns out that Spock has hit that time of the decade where Vulcans need to mate, lest their suddenly raging hormones kill them. Yeah, I don't get it, either. Kirk, sympathetic, tries to talk to Starfleet about a quick detour to Vulcan, but his refusal to go into Vulcan reproductive habits (why no one in the Federation didn't know about them until now, what with Vulcans being one of the ''founding members'' of the organization and all, I have no idea) doesn't convince them. So, like a good, dutiful little captain, Kirk... [[ScrewTheRulesImDoingWhatsRight disobeys orders and heads to Vulcan anyway]].

So, [[MilitaryMaverick par for the course]], I guess.

Once at Vulcan, Spock introduces the crew to T'Pring, his wife-to-be, and offers an invitation to both Kirk and [=McCoy=](?) to the wedding ceremony. However, after arriving at Spock's ancestral home, they learn just how in over their heads they are; not only can the bride decide not to marry her intended husband, resulting in a battle ''to the death'' with whomever the bride chooses (which Spock ''conveniently'' forgets to inform Kirk or [=McCoy=], before the ceremony), but T'Pau, ''the'' face of Vulcan, and the only person ever to decline a seat on the Federation council, is overseeing the proceedings. This wouldn't be that much of a problem...had T'Pring not rejected the marriage offer and chosen Kirk as her champion. Naturally, this results in the infamous fight scene between the two friends, ending with Spock seemingly killing Kirk after [=McCoy=] gives him something to help fight in the more hostile environment of the planet.

With the shock of killing his best friend acting like a bucket of cold water on the horny Vulcan, Spock orders Kirk's body and [=McCoy=] back to the ship while he confronts T'Pring on her choice; turns out, T'Pring hated the idea of marrying for money and fame, and fell in love with a more obscurely-known Vulcan male named Stonn, and arranged everything so that, [[XanatosGambit regardless of the outcome, she'd be able to stay with Stonn]] (even though, logically, her plan could've been derailed if Kirk ''refused the challenge'', as he's informed he could by T'Pau, before he learned of the "battle to the death" thing). Satisfied, Spock leaves the crafty bitch with her lover, and returns to the ''Enterprise'' to turn himself in for murder.

But wait! Turns out, Kirk isn't dead! Yes, the substance [=McCoy=] gave him during the battle was actually some AppliedPhlebotinum which allowed Kirk to simulate death. The episode ends with Spock barely catching himself from having a joygasm over Kirk's survival, and Kirk and [=McCoy=] having a good tease over it. Meanwhile, T'Pau covers for Kirk's shenanigans, saving him from another court martial.

!!Tropes:
* [[AccidentalHug Accidental Near-Hug]]: Overjoyed that Kirk wasn't KilledOffForReal, Spock grabs him by the arms... and quickly attempts to pretend he didn't when he notices that Chapel and [=McCoy=] are watching.
* ActOfTrueLove: Kirk sacrifices his career to save Spock. He gets it back, [[LikeYouWouldReallyDoIt of course]], but he didn't know that that would happen.
* AFriendInNeed: Kirk is patient with Spock's antics while under the ''ponn farr''. Later, he sacrifices his command to save him (and almost sacrifices his life). His reason why? "He's my friend."
* ArrangedMarriage: Spock and T'Pring.
* BitchInSheepsClothing: T'Pring. Granted, being married to a guy who you haven't seen in years would be potentially trying, but Vulcans have come to expect it. She is willing to force a fight between two best friends, one of whom is completely ignorant of what she is asking and the other of whom possibly has no more control over the ArrangedMarriage than she does. She does this over a guy who she only chose because of his docility, according to the James Blish novelization.
* BlatantLies: Spock's reaction at the end of the episode. He was ''not'' "on the verge of...an emotional display"; he was simply pleased that Starfleet had not lost one of its finest officers. [=McCoy=] {{lampshade}}s how poorly the Vulcan's lies stand up.
-->'''[=McCoy=]''': Of course, Mr. Spock, [[SarcasmMode your reaction was quite logical]]...[[{{Not}} In a pig's eye!]]
* {{Bowdlerize}}: The German dub infamously completely changed the plot to remove all sexual references, as over there, they think ''Star Trek'' is a kids' show. As a result, the entire episode plays out as if the whole thing was just a dream, which is kind of a screw to the audience if you've ever seen the episode as it was in America. In the 90s, a correct dub of the episode was finally released.
* ContinuityNod: Chapel's attraction to Spock from "[[Recap/StarTrekS1E4TheNakedTime The Naked Time]]" is brought up again. Apparently she's been constantly trying to raise his interest ever since, much to Bones' amusement.
* DeathFakedForYou: [=McCoy=] [[SlippingAMickey gives Kirk a neural paralyzer]] to prevent an actual death.
* DeathWorld: Vulcan is quite inhospitable to humans, to the point that "hot as Vulcan" has become a common saying.
* DidNotSeeThatComing: [=McCoy=]. T'Pring never mentioned him when explaining her plan to Spock, and Spock invited him as a friend, not as backup. Nonetheless, he's single-handedly responsible for the episode's HappyEnding.
* DontMakeMeDestroyYou: Not directed at Kirk himself, but on the verge of losing his sanity Spock practically begs T'Pau not to let him go through with the fight, as he does not want to kill his best friend.
* DutchAngle: Canted camera work appears soon after the PowerTrio arrive for the wedding, focusing on the Vulcans. It serves to show just how unbalanced Vulcans in ''ponn farr'' become.
* EasilyForgiven: In spite of Spock's attempt to murder him, Kirk is back to their [[HeterosexualLifePartners regular]] [[TheNotLoveInterest relationship]] by the end of the episode.
* EngagementChallenge: Well, sort of.
* ExactWords / LoopholeAbuse: Spock attempts to use this on [=McCoy=], saying that the Captain told him to "report to Sick Bay", and now that he has done so, he intends to leave. [[RealityEnsues [=McCoy=] doesn't buy it, countering that he (obviously) has orders to give Spock a medical checkup.]]
* FirstNameBasis: [[HospitalHottie Chapel]] encourages it with Spock, who actually goes with it. Spock then calls Kirk by his first name upon seeing that he's NotQuiteDead.
* ForgetsToEat: According to Kirk, one of Spock's habits when in "one of his contemplative phases."
* GrandeDame: T'Pau.
* HalfBreedDiscrimination: Of the verbal variety. When Spock begs T'Pau to keep Kirk out of the combat, she responds, " It is said thy Vulcan blood is thin. Art thee Vulcan, or art thee human?"
* HeroicBSOD: Spock suffers one of these after the ''koon-ut-kalifee''.
* IOweYouMyLife: Kirk says that Spock has saved his life a dozen times over when deciding to disobey orders.
* IndyPloy: [=McCoy=] improvises a way to keep Kirk and Spock from killing each other pretty much on the spot and with no opportunity to discuss it with anyone else. As an Unspoken Plan, it naturally [[UnspokenPlanGuarantee succeeds]].
* LeaveMeAlone:
** Spock snarls this when Uhura calls his quarters with a message, smashing the computer terminal while doing so.
** Before that, he chases Nurse Chapel out of his quarters, hurling the soup she made for him against the wall.
* LettingTheAirOutOfTheBand: When Spock realises he's smiling and shuts down all expression, the swelling music grinds to a very awkward halt.
* LivingLegend: Spock, according to T'Pring during her explanation of why she didn't want him.
* KarmaHoudini: The sting is lessened by the [[Heartwarming/StarTrekTheOriginalSeries heartwarming]] ending, but neither T'Pring nor any of the other Vulcans ever get punished.
* [[ManipulativeBastard Manipulative Bitch]]: T'Pring.
* MateOrDie
* MyGodWhatHaveIDone: Spock, believing that he has murdered Kirk, loses his will to live.
* NotQuiteDead
* OhCrap:
** Kirk, when he is in Spock's quarters and realizes that [[spoiler:Spock has been holding a knife in his trembling hand for their entire conversation]].
** When Kirk realizes his fight with Spock is one to the death.
** Spock's reaction when he realizes he's just been emotional in front of Kirk, Christine Chapel, and [=McCoy=]. Unlike the others, it's PlayedForLaughs.
* OOCIsSeriousBusiness: As in, "life-and-death" serious. Spock loses his temper on a number of occasions and completely forgets about having changed course, despite having immense self-control and an encyclopedic memory.
* PerfectlyArrangedMarriage: ''Not at all''. Neither Spock nor T'Pring is too happy about the match, especially not after the events of the episode.
* PleaseSpareHimMyLiege: Spock begs T'Pau to block Kirk from the ''Kal-i-fee''. She throws it back in his face with a few insults about his [[HalfBreedDiscrimination humanness]].
--> T'Pau...thee has the power. I plead with thee. I beg...
* PoorCommunicationKills:
** Spock would literally rather die than have the problem explained to Starfleet Command. This is apparently true of all Vulcans at this point in history.
** Poor communication also almost killed Kirk in this episode. Would it have hurt T'Pau to tell him that the fight was a [[InvoluntaryBattletotheDeath death match]] ''before'' he signed up?
** It's also possible that Kirk could've explained things to Komack in a way that would've gotten him permission to go to Vulcan without letting too much slip.
* PromotionToOpeningTitles: Dear old [=DeForest=] Kelley as Dr [=McCoy=] in this second season opener. At last, the whole PowerTrio is in the opening credits.
* RedSkyTakeWarning: Vulcan's sky is scarlet when the PowerTrio arrive for the wedding, almost as though foreshadowing what's going to happen.
* RememberTheNewGuy: Chekov is introduced as already an established crew member, though there's some odd close-up camerawork to make sure we know he's not just another one-off co-pilot for Sulu.
* RunawayBride: T'Pring, in a way.
* SlippingAMickey: [=McCoy=] gives Kirk a shot, saying that it would help Kirk breathe the thinner Vulcan air. He really gave Kirk a neural paralyzer that made it look like he was dead.
* TheTalk: Spock is forced to explain Vulcan mating habits to Kirk partway through the episode.
* ThroughHisStomach: Christine Chapel shows her concern for Spock by bringing him some Vulcan food.
* UnwantedSpouse: Spock and T'Pring for each other.
* WantingIsBetterThanHaving: Spock warns Stonn that he may find that "having is not so pleasing a thing, after all, as wanting. It is not logical, but it is often true."
* WeddingDay: Well, kind of.
* XanatosGambit: Even if Kirk had refused the challenge, or Spock had won but still been willing to go through with marrying her, her husband's Starfleet position would mean that he'd be gone most of the time, leaving her free to have an affair with Stonn in his absence; at a minimum, she's no worse off than she was to start with. Spock himself acknowledges the logic of her plan, even while personally repelled by it.
* YeOldeButcheredEnglish: Writer Theodore Sturgeon apparently wanted to show that the Vulcan language, or at least an older form of it, had separate second-person singular and plural forms (as French does with "tu" and "vous"). They showed this by using the archaic second-person familiar pronoun "thee" for "you". But T'Pau, the one character to use these formal archaisms, used "thee" even when "thou" would have been the correct word. Even if Vulcan used the same word for both pronouns (as modern English does with "you"), the translator should have been programmed to recognize the difference between subjective and objective pronouns. As it was, formal Vulcan as rendered by Celia Lovsky sounded more like Quaker 'plain speech'. If thou art the subject of a sentence then the object of the sentence wouldst be thee.
* YouAreInCommandNow: A somewhat unusual example. Blood-fever affected Spock apparently kills the captain. After coming to his senses, Spock finds himself in command, as noted by Dr. [=McCoy=].
-->'''[=McCoy=]''': As strange as it may seem, Mister Spock, you're in command now. Any orders?
-->'''Spock''': Yes. I'll follow you up in a few minutes. You will instruct Mister Chekov to plot a course for the nearest Starbase where I must surrender myself to the authorities.
* YouCalledMeXItMustBeSerious: Probably the most famous time Spock has ever foregone Kirk's title for his first name. It would be hard to think of a situation that warranted it more.
-->'''Spock''': Captain... ''Jim!''
----