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Charlie Evans

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Charles Evans

Charlie Evans is a young man living in the 23rd Century, born on an Earth Colony world, who was only a child when the ship carrying him and his parents was lost on the planet Thasus, well beyond then-current exploration patterns. He is the antagonist on the Star Trek: The Original Series episode "Charlie X", written by D.C. Fontana, and based on themes contributed by Jerome Bixby from his The Twilight Zone script for It's A Good Life. In fact, an early treatment called the script "Charlie's Law" which echoed the Twilight Zone episode by having said law be: "Be Nice To Charlie...Or Else".

A teenaged Charlie was found on Thasus in the (Earth counting) year 2266, by the crew of the SS Antares, a merchant freighter, who then requested that he be taken back to Earth by the nearby Federation starship USS Enterprise NCC-1701, commanded by Captain James T. Kirk. Their given reasons for doing so included a faster trip home for Charlie and better socialization with Kirk's younger and more diverse crew. The crew of the Antares departed while heaping nervous-sounding praise towards Charlie, and were unable to offer any explanation as to how or why he survived the years from his young childhood to young manhood alone and unattended.

At first, all seemed well, and Charlie was enthralled by three things: His surroundings, the paternal charisma of Captain Kirk, and the beauty of Yeoman Janice Rand, whom he quickly developed a deep crush on. Charlie was massively unprepared for dealing with people, male or female, and unexplained events began to multiply. The Enterprise received fitful final communications from the Antares, apologizing for some unknown wrong, just before its destruction. In one bizarre moment, live turkeys appeared in the galley after Kirk bemoaned the fact that the ship's Thanksgiving Day celebration would have no turkey, only meatloaf. Unseen by Kirk, after he beat Charlie at a game of Three-Dimensional Chess, the petulant boy made the pieces on the boards melt in frustration. When Rand attempted to fix Charlie up with a young officer closer to his age, Charlie turned the young woman into an iguana.

Finally, Kirk saw this power directly when he and Charlie were in the gym, and Charlie took a fall while wrestling. A crewman's laughter at the sight led to Charlie using his powers to make the crewman vanish. Charlie also forcibly silenced a group of laughing crew members (not laughing at him, just laughing at something unrelated) by making them freeze in place, while a female crew member's facial features were erased. When she failed to reciprocate Charlie's crush, Rand was made to vanish as well. Kirk demanded from Charlie where he sent Rand and to bring her back, but Charlie refused to say where she went or to do as Kirk told him to.

Kirk, his First Officer Mr. Spock, and Chief Medical Officer Doctor Leonard McCoy surmised that, despite Thasus being known as a long-dead planet, legends of Thasians surviving in some manner must be true, and that somehow, their unknown power had been passed to Charlie, explaining his survival. But it also left them with an insecure, immature and awkward man-child with the power to erase creation. Worse still, Charlie now wanted fast passage to an Earth colony, vastly widening the scope of his potential mayhem. Taking a huge risk, Kirk confronted Charlie, even slapping him, demanding that he stop what he was doing. Though it followed this episode in broadcast order, Kirk's chronologically earlier struggle against Gary Mitchell in "Where No Man Has Gone Before" gave him some idea of how to handle Evans, though this ultimately failed.

As Charlie was preparing to eliminate this makeshift father-figure, the Thasians at last intervened, cancelling his effects on the crew of the Enterprise, even restoring Rand and presumably the other crew-member as well. They sadly declared that they could do nothing for the crew of the Antares, and that Charlie must go back with them, the powers which kept him alive now making him too dangerous to be allowed off their world because of his immaturity and his willingness to harm people with those powers every time he did not get his way. Despite pleas from both Kirk and Charlie, the decision was final, and Charlie vanished back to the cold beings who gave him the ability to survive, but did not prepare him for the rigors of living. His final pleas echoed as he vanished, and Kirk mused that such power as he had was perhaps too great for any mortal being to wield wisely or safely.

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