Have got rather behind with writing up all the episodes, but I've now completed watching the entire series. Certainly there were some low spots along with the high, but it was a pretty amazing journey! Funny how there were a lot of episodes I really didn't remember, but others were indelibly etched on my memory.
Star Trek TNG Episode Guide
I bought the complete DVD box-set for my wife on our anniversary, so I thought I'd blog about the episodes as we watch them!
Episode Lists: Season One - Season Two - Season Three - Season Four
Best 3, Worst 3: Season One - Season Two - Season Three - Season Four
Best 3, Worst 3: Season One - Season Two - Season Three - Season Four
Saturday, 14 May 2011
You can just never trust the Romulans - off goes a rescue team to help them stop their ship from blowing up, and no sooner than that's done those pesky Romulan critters are planning on destroying the Enterprise thanks to their shiny new weapon (that's heavily disguised as something else, of course). Unfortunately the only crew members who know about this dastardly plot are Georgi and Ensign Ro, who due to a transporter mishap are phased out and so while they can see and hear everything around them, no-one can see or hear them. Since they're presumed dead, Data is planning a funeral service for Geordi (which turns out to be quite interesting!), while Riker has a few words he plans to say at Ro's funeral service (much to her chagrin - and curiosity). Meanwhile they have to make the afore-mentioned dastardly plan known before it's too late - but unknown to them, there is a Romulan who's also phased out. (Incidentally, their being out of phase results in them being able to walk through people and objects, but for some reason they never start to drop through the floor...)
Anyway, the main plot works well enough, and the sub-plot of Ro starting to question whether she was right to dismiss the Bajoran beliefs about life after death is handled well. The planning and actual event of the funerals adds a lot of humour to the episode. Altogether, The Next Phase is a thoroughly entertaining episode.
Ro shoots Riker through the head when he decides to do an impromptu jazz set at her funeral (pictured), but it's all in good fun.
Saturday, 7 May 2011
After a few nondescript episodes and a couple of stinkers, TNG returns to form with a bang here - I, Borg is an excellent episode in many ways. The Enterprise picks up a lone Borg survivor of a crash, seemingly cut off from the Borg's collective consciousness. Knowing that the Borg will come back to reclaim this survivor but with time before that happens, a plan is hatched to introduce a virus into "Third of Five"'s systems which will go on to infect the whole Borg collective. Picard, driven by his horrific experience with the Borg, fully approves of this idea, as indeed does everyone apart from Beverley - our caring doctor can't view her patient, Borg though he is, as a "thing" to turn into a living weapon.
The Best of Both Worlds] was a reason to view Hugh as a person rather than simply The Enemy), but eventually Wise Old Guinan persuades him to talk to Hugh himself before making his final decision. When he does, posing as Locutus of Borg and trying to make Hugh agree to a plan to assimilate the Enterprise crew, Hugh refuses as he knows that Geordi doesn't actually want to be assimilated.
An intriguing episode, well-written, well-acted and generally thoughtful and eventually emotional without being over-sentimental, I think this is likely to feature in my Best Three of Series Five when I come to write it. (Even the one criticism I mentioned is largely dealt with in the film First Contact.) Jonathan Del Arco is exceptional as Third of Five / Hugh. (It did make me wonder about the Borg identification system though - why is Hugh "Third of Five" when Jerry Ryan's character in Voyager was "Seven of Nine" not "Seventh of Nine"? Don't the Borg do things in a rather standard way - isn't that the point of how they work?)
I dunno... you get these little points of light decide to enter the Enterprise, one time they take over the computer, another time they take over Data, this time it decides to make Clara Sutter (Noley Thornton)'s imaginary friend Isabella into a real person. Sort of. Isabella (Shay Astar) turns out to be a nasty piece of work though, so while Clara is at first delighted to be able to really see and talk to her friend, she ends up being terrified of her. Of course she has real trouble convincing her dad (Ensign Daniel Sutter [Jeff Allin]) and Counsellor Troi that Isabella is now a real imaginary person.
A pretty dull episode really, the whole thing is rather boring / annoying and the outcome quit dull. One scene, in which Daniel Sutter talks to Geordi about his own childhood as a much-travelled son of two Starfleet officers, was quite touching, although that's maybe my new dad hormones speaking. The ship's being trapped and the problems caused by that take second fiddle to the imaginary friend plot that it seems rather irrelevant.
Wednesday, 4 May 2011
What do you do when you have a couple of Ferengi (you have to know they'll be trouble) aboard at a time when you have cargo that is in an area restricted even to your own trusted crew? Why, you give the Ferengi free reign of the ship of course, making sure to include that there is no security whatsoever at the cargo bay with the precious cargo inside - not even a simple computer check to only open the door if it's one of the trusted personnel who's allowed to be there. That rather stupid start aside, this is a rather interesting episode, as the cargo in question turns out to be Kamala (Famke Janssen), an empath whose sole purpose is to please her mate - in this case, she's intended to be a gift in part of a peace treaty arrangement. Unfortunately due to the Ferengi she hatches early from her stasis pod, and ends up taking rather a liking to Jean-Luc - who is, obviously, not her intended. Needless to say, this causes some friction and more than a bit of heartache - especially when it becomes clear that her intended isn't even particularly interested in her.
The stupid set-up aside, The Perfect Mate is quite a good episode, a bit heavy-handed on the ethics perhaps, but fairly thought-provoking all the same.
Saturday, 30 April 2011
There's nothing like the site of Luxwana Troi interacting with Deanna to make you feel that your own family - even your in-laws(!) - aren't so bad after all. I mean, she really is the most awful mother in the history of the universe. She comes aboard the Enterprise this time having decided to marry someone she's never met (Minister Campio, played by the irrepressible Tony Jay). Naturally they turn out to be completely unsuitable for one another.
Add to one of the most annoying Star Trek TNG characters, Luxwana Troi, another of the most annoying Star Trek TNH characters - Alexander - and create a truly annoying planet on the holodeck for them to both play in, and guess what you have? Yep, an annoying episode. Admittedly it has a couple of funny moments and a truly bizarre scene with Luxwana and young Alexander in a mud bath enjoying the entertainment, which is a virtually naked woman performing a rather sensual dance (which doesn't seem much in harmony with the rest of the characters in the holodeck planet), and finally those two along with Deanna and Worf sitting in a mud bath - the final line is Worf saying "So we just sit here?!".
Oh year, and along the way the Enterprise saves a planet and in doing so picks up a parasite that turns all the nitrium on the ship into sludge (which naturally doesn't help things to work as they should). This is the only part of the episode which isn't - what was that word again? - annoying. Ah well. Luxwana gets out of her marriage by turning up nude, as per Betazoid custom. What fun for one and all!
Friday, 29 April 2011
Captain Picard is invited to be the commencement speaker at the academy's graduation ceremony, and delighted to have this honour and to see young bratling Wesley Crusher again, who's graduating - or is he? The Boy Wonder was due to feature in a spectacular flypast in the rings of Saturn as part of an elite group of pilots, but an accident results in the death of one of the team. Team leader Nicolas Locarno (Robert Duncan McNeill, who Trekkies would later see as Tom Paris on Star Trek: Voyager) always looks out for his team members, but it quickly becomes clear that something's up, and that the story told by the team - including the Crushed One - doesn't seem to match up with available data. However since the available data is too scanty to reconstruct events accurately, the team seem about to get away with it - whatever it is they're hiding.
Picard of course manages to unravel the whole thing, and convinces Wesley to do the right thing. Hints at events in Picard's own sometimes turbulent past are hinted at although never revealed in detail. A fairly bland episode really, but not that bad either. The "First Duty" of a Federation Cadet, in case you wondered, is to the truth. So now you know. As far as Star Trek episodes about peer-pressure go, it's okay.
- Dave Seaman
- Blogger, writer, reviewer, runs several blogs and writes for Epinions. Active in the AGS community and writer / puzzle designer (occasionally voice actor) for a few adventure games including Unga Needs Mumba, The Journey of Iesir and my own game series Troll Song. Also working on 2 games based on the Captain Disaster character I wrote a series of short stories about several years ago.Experimenting with using Google+ to drive traffic to my blogs and reviews - I have no interest in "social networking", real-life friends are enough for me!
The Enterprise is on an archaeological mission but when they receive a distress call from Turkana 4, the home world of Tasha Yar, off they g...
In this penultimate episode of season three the Enterprise rescues a mysterious stranger who has lost his memory, who becomes dubbed as &quo...
Season 1, Episode 1 - Encounter at Farpoint Season 1, Episode 2 - The Naked Now Season 1, Episode 3 - Code of Honour Season 1, Episode 4 ...
Having an entire episode basically mirroring one from TOS makes it a bit weak plot-wise , but there's a fair amount of humour to help t...
Another good episode, in which we meet engineer Lieutenant Reginald Barclay ("Broccoli" to his colleagues) for the first time. ...
Yet another chance to rid the Enterprise of Wesley Crusher goes begging as he misses his ship heading for Starfleet Academy, and in the proc...
Aliens with an essential vaccine come, make friends, and kidnap Tasha Yar. While it is quite understandable for a guy to take a shine to ou...
Season Three, Episide One - Evolution Season Three, Episode Two - The Ensigns of Command Season Three, Episode Three - The Survivors Season ...
The season ends with the sight of Jean-Luc, as Locutus of Borg, telling earth that they might as well surrender as resistance is futile. An...
What do you do when you have a couple of Ferengi (you have to know they'll be trouble) aboard at a time when you have cargo that is in a...