Best Star Trek Episodes

10 Best Star Trek Episodes Ever: Our Top Picks (2024)

Star Trek, a sci-fi phenomenon that has boldly gone where no one has gone before, boasts a vast universe of great episodes across its various series.

If you want to watch the best Star Trek episodes, here's the list of the best episodes and why they're essential viewing for both longtime fans and newcomers alike.

Top 10 Standout Episodes From Star Trek Series

1. Star Trek: Strange New Worlds - "Strange New Worlds" (Season 1, Episode 1)

Star Trek Strange New Worlds S01E01

Original Airdate: May 5, 2022

Synopsis: Captain Pike ends his self-imposed isolation to save a missing officer from a covert mission.

Why We Like It: In the pilot episode of "Strange New Worlds," we're whisked away to uncharted territories alongside Capt. Pike and his Enterprise crew.

It really embodies the essence of the Star Trek franchise.

The first episode expertly balances character development with thrilling exploration, setting the stage for a respective series filled with adventure and discovery.

2. "Where No Man Has Gone Before" (Season 1, Episode 3)

Original Airdate: September 22, 1966

Synopsis: The 200-year-old USS Valiant's flight recorder tells a terrifying story of a magnetic storm at the galaxy's edge.

Why We Like It: As one of the earliest chapters of the "Star Trek: The Original Series," "Where No Man Has Gone Before" epitomizes the spirit of Star Trek. 

This episode showcases the USS Enterprise crew facing a god-like entity, challenging the very limits of human understanding. 

It's a classic example of the original series' exploration of philosophical themes and moral dilemmas.

3. "The Measure Of A Man" (Season 2, Episode 9)

Star Trek The Next Generation S2E9

Original Airdate: February 13, 1989

Synopsis: When Data quits his job instead of being taken apart by an unskilled scientist, a hearing is held to decide if Data is property or a thinking being with rights.

Why We Like It: "The Measure Of A Man" from "Star Trek: The Next Generation" is widely regarded as one of the best episodes in the series. 

The whole episode features thought-provoking dramas delving into the nature of sentience and artificial intelligence.

Captain Picard and Commander Riker, played by Patrick Stewart and Jonathan Frakes, must debate Data's own right. This one episode sets the Star Trek principle of respecting all life, no matter its form.

4. "The City on the Edge of Forever" (Season 1, Episode 28)

Original Airdate: April 6, 1967

Synopsis: When Dr. McCoy goes temporarily insane and alters history, Kirk and Spock pursue him to prevent disaster, but the cost is significant.

Why We Like It: In this iconic episode from the "Star Trek: The Original Series," Kirk and Spock travel back in time to 1930s Earth, confronting moral dilemmas and the consequences of altering history.

The episode restores history but remains heartbreaking. A good person must stop another good person from performing a heroic act to prevent the best villain from winning in history.

We can say that "The City on the Edge of Forever" is a masterclass in storytelling, blending sci-fi elements with the poignant human drama of our favorite characters. 

5. "Amok Time" (Season 2, Episode 1)

Original Airdate: September 15, 1967

Synopsis: During the Pon Farr mating period, Spock must go back to Vulcan to meet his future wife, whom he was promised to since childhood.

Why We Like It: "Amok Time" explores the complex culture of Vulcan [1] as Spock grapples with intense emotions. 

The entire episode profoundly delves into Spock's character, offering insight into his inner struggles and the depth of his friendship with Kirk (William Shatner).

Read: Recommended Star Trek Gift Ideas

6. "Far Beyond the Stars" (Season 6, Episode 13)

Original Airdate: February 9, 1998

Synopsis: Captain Sisko experiences a vivid vision of himself as a little-known science fiction writer in 1950s America.

Why We Like It: "Star Trek: Deep Space Nine" delivers a powerful and poignant episode with "Far Beyond the Stars."

This is where Captain Sisko experiences vivid hallucinations of life as a 1950s science fiction writer. 

We like how this episode tackles issues of racism and inequality, transcending the sci-fi genre to deliver a message of hope and perseverance.

7. "Mirror, Mirror" (Season 2, Episode 4)

Original Airdate: October 6, 1967

Synopsis: A transporter mishap lands Captain Kirk's team in a different universe, where the Enterprise serves a barbaric empire.

Why We Like It: "Mirror, Mirror" introduced the infamous Mirror Universe, where familiar characters take on sinister personas, which is captivating to watch. 

The episode features a transporter mishap that switches Captain Kirk and his crew with their evil counterparts from a parallel universe known as the "Mirror Universe" [2].

In this universe, the Star Trek's Enterprise serves the Terran Empire, a ruthless organization where officers are promoted through assassination.

"Mirror, Mirror" is a highly acclaimed episode of the original Star Trek series, and the Mirror Universe is revisited in later Star Trek parts.

8. "The Doomsday Machine" (Season 2, Episode 6)

Star Trek The Doomsday Machine S2E6)

Original Airdate: October 20, 1967

Synopsis: The USS Enterprise finds the damaged USS Constellation and its distressed commodore, who is resolved to halt the enormous planet-destroying robot ship that destroyed his crew.

Why We Like It: "The Doomsday Machine" is a thrilling installment from the original series, featuring the crew of the Enterprise facing off against a planet-destroying weapon of mass destruction. 

Many viewers hailed "Doomsday Machine" as the best episode for its tense atmosphere and compelling narrative. This is a must-watch for fans looking for drama and action in one episode. 

Check out our favorite Star Trek quotes here

9. "Blink Of An Eye" (Season 6, Episode 12)

Original Airdate: January 19, 2000

Synopsis: Voyager gets stuck orbiting a planet where time moves fast, with days passing in seconds, and becomes part of the local mythology.

Why We Like It: In "Blink Of An Eye," Voyager encounters a planet where time moves at an accelerated rate, leading to fascinating consequences for both the crew and the inhabitants. 

The entire Voyager crew demonstrates their individual skills and teamwork to resolve the issue, reflecting how Star Trek influences real-world technology.

We like how this episode explores the concept of time dilation in a captivating and thought-provoking manner.

10. "The Next Generation" (Season 3, Episode 1)

Star Trek The Next Generation Season 3 Episode 1

Original Airdate: September 25, 1989

Synopsis: Wesley's experiment might be causing a computer problem that puts a scientist's important mission at risk.

Why We Like It: The pilot episode of "Star Trek: The Next Generation" introduced us to a new era of exploration with Captain Jean-Luc Picard at the helm of the USS Enterprise-D. 

Like the "Star Trek: Picard," this sets the stage for the adventures to come, with the Borg collective [3] showcasing the diverse and dynamic crew of the flagship.

We can say that it's the top among three seasons, and if you're potential Star Trek fan who enjoys it, you'll likely be familiar with "The Next Generation" characters and may want to learn more about them.

Read: Star Wars vs Star Trek

Honorable Mentions

  • "Q&A" - Short Treks Fifth Episode
  • "Duet" - Star Trek: Deep Space Nine (Season 1, Episode 19)
  • "Such Sweet Sorrow, Part 2" - Strange New Worlds (Discovery Season 2, Episode 14)
  • "Second Contact" - Star Trek: Lower Decks Animated Series (Season 1, Episode 1)
  • "No Small Parts" - Star Trek: Lower Decks Animated Series (Season 1, Episode 10)
  • "I Have No Bones, Yet I Must Flee" - Star Trek: Lower Decks (Season 4, Episode 2)


    What is the best Star Trek episode from the original series?

    The best episode from the original franchise is often considered to be "The City on the Edge of Forever" (Season 1, Episode 28), praised for its compelling storyline and emotional depth.

    If we were to pick just one episode, this one is a must-watch as it blends fan service, cool characters, drama, and thrilling moments.

    What is the most controversial Star Trek episode?

    One of the most controversial Star Trek chapters is "The Measure Of A Man" (Season 2, Episode 9) from "Star Trek: The Next Generation," due to its exploration of artificial intelligence and ethics.

    But other controversial episodes include:

    • "Code of Honor" (Season 1, Episode 3) for misogyny, racism, and sexism
    • "Conspiracy" (Season 1, Episode 24) for gore contents
    • "Harbinger" (Season 3, Episode 15) for nude scenes
    • "These Are the Voyages..." (Season 4, Episode 22) for unnecessary death and disappointing series finale

      What is the saddest Star Trek episode?

      One of the saddest Star Trek chapters is "The Visitor" (Season 4, Episode 3) from "Star Trek: Deep Space Nine," which explores the profound emotional impact of loss and sacrifice.

      Also considered one of the saddest Star Trek chapters is "Course Oblivion" [4] from the fifth season of "Star Trek: Voyager," which depicts the demise of the entire USS Voyager crew.

      It begins with the joyous wedding of Lt. B'Elanna Torres and Lt. Tom Paris, but their bliss is swiftly shattered.

      What is the scariest Star Trek episode?

      One of the scariest Star Trek chapters is "The Tholian Web" (Season 3, Episode 9), featuring a tense and claustrophobic atmosphere as the crew faces a mysterious threat from the Tholian species.

      Final Thoughts

      These episodes represent the best of Star Trek, each offering a unique and memorable experience that resonates with franchise fans. Star Trek offers a galaxy of standout episodes across its various series, each showcasing the franchise's enduring appeal.

      From iconic moments like "The City on the Edge of Forever" to thought-provoking dramas like "The Measure Of A Man," these episodes exemplify the best of Star Trek's exploration of humanity, morality, and adventure.

      Whether you're a seasoned fan or new to the final frontier, these episodes are essential viewing. Dive into the rich history of Star Trek's universe and explore its vast potential.

      For all your Star Trek needs, visit Toynk today and explore our Star Trek collection to start your own interstellar journey. Free shipping within the contiguous USA, so order now!



      Leave a comment

      All comments are moderated before being published.

      This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

      Free U.S. Shipping

      Free shipping for every order, every day for the contiguous U.S.