20. Nimoy Invented The Vulcan Neck Pinch
It’s since become a cultural meme, name-checked in everyday conversation and Beastie Boys songs alike, but there would be no Vulcan neck pinch were it not for Leonard Nimoy. The actor who played Spock in the original series came up with the novel self-defence move after being dissatisfied with a script.
The stage directions in the screenplay for the episode “The Enemy Within” had Spock knocking out Kirk by battering him around the head, an action which Nimoy thought was rather undignified for a character as restrained and pacifistic as his had been up until that point.
So he came up with the so-called “Famous Spock Nerve Pinch” as it was described in later scripts. He pitched it to the director by explaining that Spock was a graduate from the Vulcan Institute of Technology where he took a number of courses on the human anatomy, so he knew the right place to knock ’em out. Shatner got it straight away, which sealed the deal.