Cue the best courtroom drama episode of Star Trek ever produced including an astonishing performance from Patrick Stewart backed up by an understated but incredibly potent interaction with Whoopi Goldberg, and superb work from Jonathan Frakes, especially in the Blu-ray exclusive extended versions of the story. Q arrives, has a stand-off with Guinan and requests to join the crew of the Enterprise much to the annoyance of Commander Riker and Microbrain aka Worf. Captain Picard makes the mistake of stating his belief that his crew and Starfleet as a whole is ready to meet whatever is out there.
So Q clicks his fingers and throws the Galaxy class Enterprise to the solar system designated J to discover a planet with readings identical to those found in The Neutral Zone. Not only that It turns out that resistance is futile and your biological and technological distinctiveness will be added to that of Trek fandom, as this is one of the episodes that really will grab you — though its direct sequel is still to come. An old flame of Worf, in the form of the half-human, half-Klingon, Ambassador K'Ehleyr, arrives on the Enterprise in a unique way.
At the behest of Starfleet Security, the Ambassador is on board to warn and assist the crew of the Enterprise regarding the threat posed by a K'Tinga class Klingon Cruiser, the crew of which have been in suspended animation for 75 years. The crew of the IKS T'Ong are on a secret mission to attack the Federation, and are, of course, unaware that peace has broken out between the former enemies. Susie Plakson's turn as K'Ehleyr cements her position as a go-to actress for the franchise after her superb debut as Doctor Selar earlier in the season The Schizoid Man and would go on to reprise this part and manage to take on two further alien races in roles as the female Q in Voyager and Lt.
Tarah of the Andorian Imperial Guard in Enterprise , making four in total. No other actor has played a Vulcan, an Andorian, a Klingon and a Q! Foreshadowing Star Trek: Insurrection , a Federation research team has been revealed to the indigenous lifeforms on a planet with a very pre-warp civilization, causing a breach of the Prime Directive, necessitating Commander Riker and Counsellor Troi to go undercover as the Vulcan-eque Mintakans to rescue a researcher.
Hilarity ensues. That is, if you find Picard being referred to as a God and having people sacrificed to him hilarious. It shows Next Generation at its thoughtful best. You know something major has occurred when the end of the pre-credit sequence involves Worf being replaced by Lt. Unfortunately Guinan's extra-normal perception detects that the timeline has changed. This story sets up a few things, as well as being downright brilliant in its own right, and is every bit as much a must-watch as Best Of Both Worlds.
Jonathan Frakes graduates Paramount Academy with his directorial debut here, bringing the best out of Patrick Stewart and Brent Spiner in particular, as Data struggles to understand why he has to inform the Captain of his attempts to procreate when none of the other crew have to. A great performance from Hallie Todd as Lal which, literally, is the heart of the story, elevates this into the top Mogh, father of Worf is accused of betraying the Klingons to the Romulans, and thus instigating the Khitomer massacre.
Starfleet's only Klingon officer isn't going to just let it lie, only to find he has a brother he knew nothing about. This is the first time Worf interacts with the Klingon High Council, at least on-screen, and comes into conflict with the Duras family for the first time — the actions in this episode would reverberate through both Next Generation , DS9 and into Star Trek: Generations.
From one father, to another.
Hoeveel kun je lenen?
Ambassador Sarek of Vulcan, whose son is none other than Ambassador and formerly Captain Spock, comes aboard the Enterprise much to the delight of Captain Picard. Unfortunately it seems that Sarek is incapable of visiting the Enterprise in good health, and is suspected of being the cause of heightened tension and conflict aboard ship. Once again Mark Lenard is outstanding, and Patrick Stewart's performance as he grapples with Sarek's erratic emotional state is a slightly uncomfortable highlight.
J turns out to be a solar system not far enough from the Federation, and the readings from The Neutral Zone are forgotten as a single Borg vessel prepares to cut a swathe through Federation territory, with Captain Picard and anyone else in their way becoming little more than collateral damage. The cliff-hanger, Star Trek 's first as a season closer, drove fans up the wall for months, with the main story wrapped up in the first episode of season 4 and an epilogue in the second episode of the season, Family , that underlined quite what the Captain went through as Locutus, once again proving who was leading the cast in more ways than one.
It turns out that 3 to 4 year old Klingon children grow up really fast as Alexander was conceived during his mother's last visit to the Enterprise, and he looks like he's about 5. The episode also returns Duras to the screen and introduces Gowron. Unfortunately Alexander loses his mother, after she investigates Worf's dishonour and the Khitomer massacre, when Duras murders her. A Cardassian Gul Captain and two aides join the crew of the Enterprise to stop the Phoenix destroying further Cardassian vessels and outposts.
This is the first appearance of the Cardassians on screen with Marc Alaimo staking an early claim to the de-facto portrayal of a Cardassian commanding officer, Gul Macet, in advance of landing the regular role as Gul Dukat in Deep Space Nine. We also learn a bit about Chief O'Brien's background in the process — giving Colm Meaney some decent room to show what he can do. Gowron attempts to take his place as Chancellor of the Klingon High Council but the sisters of Duras, Lursa and B'Etor reveal the deceased candidate's son and challenge the succession.
The result is a Klingon Civil War, and Worf's loyalties are split between the Federation and his own people.
It seems the Duras are also getting help, as they have done before, from another race with cloaked ships. Leave it to Captain Data to sort out the situation. Will someone please tell me how Picard isn't a Fleet Captain or Commodore at this point, when he's in command of a fleet? How do you talk to a race that appears to speak in gibberish, even with the universal translator doing its best? According to the Children Of Tamar, the best solution is to beam your Captain and that of the vessel you are trying to communicate with down to a planet with a dangerous creature, give each officer a knife and see if they can work out their differences.
The late, great Michael Piller remarked of this episode "I just think Darmok is the prototype of what Star Trek should be. A bit of Sarek again, as Spock goes undercover on Romulus conducting cowboy diplomacy, prompting Picard and Data to pretend to be Romulans, and get transported to Romulus aboard a Klingon Bird Of Prey. There's a reference to ear licking. There's a discussion between Data and Spock. Tasha's daughter, the Romulan commander, turns up. Jonathan Frakes sings the Next Generation theme tune in a blooper. Do I really need to say any more?
The great and much missed Leonard Nimoy on Next Generation is all the recommendation this one needs. Riker becomes involved romantically with the female-leaning Soren, only to find such a person is viewed as a throwback in need of therapy by their own people. It's equally heart-breaking and brilliant. Bizarrely it appears that our wider knowledge of the human condition as a whole has caught up with this episode which was originally conceived to provide an allegory for different sexualities, and was criticised for not being awfully successful in that endeavour at the time.
It's not a person damn it, it's a Borg! Except it is a person, even though it's a Borg, it transpires. A single-minded Captain Picard is determined to introduce a virus-like problem into the collective using a teenaged Borg an Enterprise away team has rescued from a crash site as the conduit. This one is a wonderfully written and executed episode which lays a path for later developments — Borg can indeed become individuals again.
Captain Picard is ensnared by an alien probe which as far as the rest of the crew is aware, forces him unconscious. They are unaware that another man's life is being experienced by Jean-Luc, which we the viewer get to experience with him. Patrick Stewart excels as he often does in a great bit of science fiction that won a Hugo award and was nominated for an Emmy. In season one or two, yes, that would be a mistake, but in season 3?
I am sorry, but that IS narrow-minded. Sarek's role in the story elevates it, because we have seen all those great things first hand. The story does work well without it, but it's in no way a flaw. As for fanwank somehow killing the franchise: How? Voyager distancing itself from any familiar setting of the franchise?
Enterprise being a prequel never mattering until season 4 with exception of rare instances of random fanservice? It was continuing refusal to modernize its storytelling, lack of new ideas and resolve to adolescent gimmicks and writers being either inexperienced or running out ideas for a project they had no passion towards, due to restriction on what they wanted to do.
Not making one episode in hundred about a returning character from one of the most iconic fictional works in history. It's OK. I get the e-mail notifications of these, not Josh, so he literally has no idea you're here. Thank you, I but it's more about leaving comments on something old period.
I thought you two were actually the same person. BTW, I regret callinfg his accusation "childish". I still find his claim insulting and wrongheaded though. I do now. Enterprise was cancelled in its last season partly because it had become too fanwanky. Only hardcore fans were watching it, and only then out of a sense of obligation.
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The ratings were tanking, and it's hard not to see that as at least part of the reason why. I maintain TNG got far too self-referential. If TNG fans thought the theme song to Star Trek V was from their show and not from the film series, that says something. The more you do this sort of thing, the smaller and smaller your potential audience becomes. Hence, Enterprise. And, by the looks of it, this new show.
Perhaps my comment was childish. Not as childish as grimdark and fanwank though. Toggle Navigation.
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A magical ritual to pay my rent. This episode should not exist.
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I don't mean there are thematic decisions I disagree with, or there are narrative framing problems, or even that the story is morally, ethically or politically indefensible: Indeed, at its heart this is a wonderfully moving story about aging and a loss of self and identity, as every critic on the face of the planet to cover this franchise who isn't me has already duly noted. I mean the entire ethos of this story, from conception to execution, is predicated on the demands of Hollywood business networking rather than good creative or storytelling sense.
It is the most depressingly obvious of cynical pandering, and the fact the actual episode turned out to be this good is actually an incidental nonissue, albeit one that that shows how heroic the writing staff was and how connected to their series they had become by this point, whether willingly or not. The sad thing is this still keeps my from enjoying it. But values and ideals, it would seem, last only until a respected veteran actor shows up on your doorstop and you decide you need to do a little schmoozing.
As it so happens Lenard himself agreed with me, and he will thankfully get one more chance to return to the magic of that one powerful rendez-vous, but it will take until Star Trek: Deep Space Nine for him to do it and he'll have to write the damn thing himself. I want everyone to ask yourselves this question: If this story had been made completely as-is, but with Sarek's role being played by some one-off ambassador character, would it still be considered the timeless masterpiece that it is?
It's not too far our of the realm of possibility: Writer Marc Cushman apparently pitched, at Roddenberry's request, two versions of this story-One with Sarek and one with a Vulcan character we didn't have any previous knowledge of or attachment to. But that's not what I'm interested in here, I'm talking purely about reception and legacy. Because while the story itself may be a good and important one about mental illness and aging, the fact that it's Sarek dwarfs everything else.
The episode's themes really ought to be the draw here, but I think the reason it has the reputation it does is not because it's a touching mature take on a subject matter a great many of us may face, but because Sarek is in it and that it's happening to Sarek. He, and by association all the retroactive baggage from the Original Series he brings with him, becomes the attraction, rather than the plot, and that's a true shame when the plot is as sophisticated as it is. Sarek's presence does precisely what Gene Roddenberry in his more cogent moments feared it would and overshadows the work the rest of the show is trying to do.
Just look at the episode's title, possibly the most banal and uncreative in the entire history of the franchise: Just his name, nothing more, nothing less, because that's all they figure they need to grab their audiences hook, line and sinker. And, depressingly, they're right. It is somewhat telling, as Michael Piller also points out, that Roddenberry gave this story the go-ahead just as his own faculties were beginning to fade.
And there is a certain poignant truth to this, knowing that Roddenberry only has a year or so left to live and that in a few months he'll be openly imploring Piller to stay on essentially as his heir apparent. And this is a very, very bad thing.
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Ron Moore and Ira Behr did a page one rewrite, and Behr talks about the long and bloody battle he had to go through to sneak in a name-drop of Spock. That was a major taboo when I got there. No way could you mention the original Star Trek characters. It took days and days of arguing to slip in a single reference to Spock. So I like to think in my own sort of incoherent way I helped start to push open the door to what was a very, very closed and narrow franchise. Link Reply. Name required.
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