Buttons on Captain Kirk’s chair

Ever wonder what the buttons are on the arm rest of Captain Kirk’s command chair on the Star Trek Enterprise? 

I found the answer while watching the Star Trek episode “Court Martial“. In the episode, Captain Kirk was accused of jettisoning a crew member from a research pod without giving him time to escape during an ion storm.  In the court martial, Captain Kirk was shown pressing the button below.
CaptainKirkChair.pngOf all the buttons you could possibly put on the Captain’s chair, there’s a dedicated button to “Jettison Pod” with no safety on it.  You’re really asking for trouble putting “Jettison Pod” right underneath “Red Alert” since the Enterprise is almost always under “Red Alert”.  You could just be one “Red Alert” away from jettisoning the pod again.

The good thing about the console design is that the Captain’s chair is built with expansion in mind.  There are two unlabeled buttons on the console.  Ready for “send alien babes to Captain’s Quarters” or something like that.  All you need is a little sticker to stick next to the button.

The episode Court Martial does have a pretty cool Dr. McCoy line when he’s talking to one of Captain Kirk’s beautiful old flames:

“All of my friends look like doctors, all of his look like you.”

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  • Reply Grady Christie January 25, 2012 at 4:58 pm

    I never thought about that. I’ve seen “Court Martial” dozens of times and didn’t consider the fact that Captain Kirk could accidentally jettison the pod!

  • Reply T D July 24, 2022 at 7:02 pm

    I kind of think that this console set-up was strictly for this episode: There’s a 1960’s-tech level of understanding in play, so probably very few folks back then would have thought a lot about it. Remember the scene where Atty Cogley professes his hate for computers but his love for his 1000’s of law books instead. 1960’s culture was “anti-machine” (to include stigmatizing computers).

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