Say what you will about the new Star Trek: Discovery, but it does seem to at least have some competent production values going for it. Star Trek fans have, over the years, come to appreciate the reused sets, corny costumes, and most of all the hammy action scenes of people rocking back and forth amid intergalactic warfare. In particular, there’s something distinctive about the shows’ fight choreography, a sort of plodding, overly premeditated dance between a jumpsuit and a big rubber monster that’s not far off from a Godzilla movie. Take, for example, this notorious video of The Worst Fight Scene Ever:
There are a lot of noteworthy moments here—like the big stick, the hug, the leg grab, or what can only be described as the rock-off—but the signature Star Trek fight-scene move comes at 0:20, when Kirk clasps both hands and levels this fell beast with a devastating double punch. As a new Motherboard article details, this singular blow has gone on to be delivered numerous times throughout Star Trek history, despite the fact that it’s ridiculous; it is a source of endless fascination among fans online. Here’s Spock delivering a cavalcade of double punches to a woman:
Picard unleashing one on a big ol’ guy on The Next Generation:
And Deep Space Nine’s Major Kira using it against Cardassian after Cardassian:
Motherboard’s Jordan Pearson tracked down long-time stunt coordinator Dennis Madalone, who didn’t innovate the double-fist punch but did use it regularly across some 400 episodes of the various series, from The Next Generation through Voyager. Madalone says it was really a matter of taste, a preference for the way the double punch seemed at once classic and futuristic. He didn’t have a bunch of oversight and was left to sort of do as he wished. As a weird aside, Madalone is also the guy who made this video:
So his taste is a little suspect.
You can read the rest of the article here, and see if the double punch made it into the new Star Trek: Discovery when it premieres this Sunday.