'Star Trek' Stunt Coordinator Talks Iconic Double-Fist Punch

It looks like there's a lot more to a certain Star Trek fight move than meets the eye.

The double-fisted punch - known in wrestling circles as the "double ax-handle" has become a recurring motif of Star Trek television. The move first appearing in Star Trek: The Original Series' infamous fight between Kirk and Gorn. But the move reappeared in both The Next Generation and Deep Space Nine, causing some Trekkies to speculate if it some sort of in-universe significance.

According to Dennis Madalone, who served as stunt coordinator on The Next Generation, Deep Space Nine, and Voyager, that isn't necessarily the case. As he revealed in an interview with Motherboard, the later Trek series gave him free reign when coordinating the fight scenes, allowing him to draw inspiration from the Kirk/Gorn fight.

"It was something I saw as a kid - when I saw Kirk fighting back then, that was the one move that stuck in my mind." Madalone explained. "That was a move that looked more realistic [for Star Trek] than the old cowboy punches, because those didn't work for me in any futuristic context."

Madalone argued that the punch serves as a unique alternative to the one-armed punches traditionally found on Western TV shows.

"When you're doing something in the future, you can't show the old cowboy punches." Madalone added. "The double-hit looked modern, futuristic, and not barbaric."

But all these years later, it sounds like Madalone is more than willing to admit how outrageous the fighting move looks.


"I don't think it's realistic at all, or that anyone would be in a fight and double-hit anybody." Madalone revealed. "It's not a real thing, but it looks real in movies and TV. It's a cool move to see and watch."

Either way, here's hoping the double-fisted punch makes its way onto the newest Trek series, Star Trek: Discovery.