***** (5 stars out of 5)
"Yesteryear", by series story editor (and a personal favourite of mine) D.C. Fontana, is must-see. Assuming you ever watch any of these cartoons, watch THIS one.
It's a sequel of sorts to both 'The City on The Edge of Forever' and 'Journey To Babel'.
The Guardian of Forever on the time vortex planet is being (rather recklessly?) used for historical research.
(I love the Bird Guy with the tricorder. You just KNOW he's got a story. It's one of the strengths of animation- they can bring us a really ALIEN alien.)
Kirk & Spock return from a trip to the Orion past and nobody else remembers who Spock is! In this reality- Kirk's first officer has been an Andorian called Thelin for 5 years.
A Search for Spock reveals he died, age seven, in the kahs-wan maturity test. Since then his father Sarek has thrown himself into his work, and his mother Amanda Grayson has died in a shuttle accident. In the history Spock remembers his mysterious cousin Selek saved his life. Now Spock must become Selek, travel back thirty years to Tasmeen the 20th, 8877, and save his own young life to restore time.
(I love Thelin's sanguine response to his potentially being written out of a job, maybe out of existence. As a warrior, he is not especially charitable, but he respects family. Spock and Amanda's lives have value, so he simply offers the Vulcan salute.)
Undercover Spock observes his child-self responding with emotion to the taunts of racist little bullies. Sarek makes apology for his son, and Spock responds with "In the family, all is silence." I find that line especially disturbing in that it sounds like a Vulcan cultural platitude. Yikes!
I also enjoy Spock's line to his young self: "There is some human blood in my family line. It is not fatal."
Spock, age 7, (trailed by his bearlike old pet sehlat I-Chaya) runs off to the desert to try to prove himself. Spock, age 37, neck pinches Battlecat, a green miniature godzillasaur called a le-matya. The le-matya poisons brave I-Chaya in young Spock's place. The boy must choose to have the Healer extend the pet's life painfully, or to grant the beast a dignified death.
"Loss of life is to be mourned, but only if the life was wasted. I-Chaya's was not."
It's a delight, an insightful look at Vulcan and Spock's orgins, and a touching tale. I love it so.