science! Archive

19

Star Trek: The Next Generation Re-Watch: “Transfigurations”

transfigurations189“Transfigurations”
Written by René Echevarria
Directed by Tom Benko

Season 3, Episode 25
Original air date: June 4, 1990
Star date: 43957.2

Mission summary

Worf encourages La Forge to hit on a woman in Ten Forward, in the only way a Klingon can, but the awkward engineer crashes and burns. And he’s not the only one: In the course of a routine charting assignment, Enterprise has detected a crashed vessel on a planet. They investigate and discover a lone survivor in the wreckage of an escape pod. He’s in pretty bad shape, too unstable to transport, so Dr. Crusher whips out a thingey that links La Forge’s nervous system to help regulate the patient’s heart. The interface delivers a weird little shock to La Forge, but he seems fine, and it works. They bring the injured man aboard.

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20

Star Trek: The Next Generation Re-Watch: “A Matter of Perspective”

A Matter of Perspective“A Matter of Perspective”
Written by Ed Zuckerman
Directed by Cliff Bole

Season 3, Episode 14
Original air date: February 12, 1990
Star date: 43610.4

Mission summary

Data interrupts Picard’s art class to tell him that they’ve arrived at Tenuga IV and also that Picard couldn’t paint his way out of a Rothko. It seems Riker and La Forge conducted a survey of Dr. Apgar’s work on Krieger waves, which they hope will become a new energy source. La Forge says in so many words that Riker surveyed someone just a little too intimately and is in a rush to return. But as he beams back, Dr. Apgar’s science station explodes, and Riker barely makes it home intact.

But his luck isn’t meant to last, because an Inspector Krag beams aboard and arrests Riker… for murder.

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8

Star Trek: The Next Generation Re-Watch: “The High Ground”

highground1“The High Ground”
Written by Melinda M. Snodgrass
Directed by Gabrielle Beaumont

Season 3, Episode 12
Original air date: January 29, 1990
Star date: 43510.7

Mission summary

The Enterprise has decided to give some medical supplies to Ireland Rutia IV, but it turns out terrorists have been bombing places so shore leave got canceled. Bummer. Dr. Crusher, Worf, and Data are sipping some tea in a cafe (for…work?) when a bomb goes off injuring civilians. Worf says they have to get out of there, but Crusher starts bandaging the wounded and refuses to beam back to the ship until the local medics arrive. Suddenly one of the Ansata–the space IRA–appears out of nowhere, kills a policeman, and abducts Crusher to the void from whence he came.

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22

Star Trek: The Next Generation Re-Watch: “Booby Trap”

Booby Trap“Booby Trap”
Teleplay by Ron Roman and Michael Piller & Richard Danus
Story by Michael Wagner & Ron Roman
Directed by Gabrielle Beaumont

Season 3, Episode 6
Original air date:  October 30, 1989
Star date: 43205.6

Mission summary

La Forge is weirding out his first (and last) date by laying it on way too thick in a Margaritaville holoprogram (probably came with the machine, surely the designers didn’t expect anyone to use it), and soon his date can’t take another second and begs off.  Just another day on the love boat…

At least Picard is having some fun, exploring a Promellian ship from a forgotten battle waged over 1000 years ago that’s still broadcasting its distress signal. After he beams down, there’s a slight energy blip on the Enterprise–clue #1. The dead ship is full of corpses who have died at their posts–clue #2. But what could possibly go wrong out here in space, isolated, and as lonely as Geordi on a Saturday night? And the law of television says you need three clues, so they’re probably fine, right?

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6

Star Trek: The Next Generation Re-Watch: “Evolution”

“Evolution”
Written by Michael Piller, Story by Michael Piller and Michael Wagner
Directed by Winrich Kolbe

Season 3, Episode 1
Original air date: September 25, 1989
Star date: 43125.8

Mission summary

Acting Ensign Wesley Crusher wakes up from a terrible dream about spending two years aboard an alternate version of the Enterprise, in which the crew often behaved as if their dialogue and actions were guided by poorly-written television scripts and their missions didn’t make any sense. Phew. Thank goodness that’s over. Unfortunately, Commander Riker’s wake-up call informs Wesley he’s late for Bridge duty; he’d fallen asleep at his workstation and forgotten to set an alarm. He hastily packs up his scattered equipment and rushes off to take his position at Navigation.

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20

Star Trek: The Next Generation Re-Watch: “Shades of Gray”

“Shades of Gray”
Teleplay by Maurice Hurley and Richard Manning & Hans Beimler
Story by Maurice Hurley
Directed by Rob Bowman

Season 2, Episode 22
Original air date: July 17, 1989
Star date: 42976.1

Mission summary

Riker and La Forge are exploring Dagobah when Riker gets a scratch on his leg. *tension music* He think it’s just a flesh wound, but La Forge asks for an emergency beam-out anyway. Unsurprisingly, the transporter’s biofilters detect something low-budget within Riker and just to be on the safe side, O’Brien decides not to beam him up until Pulaski can unnecessarily risk exposure by beaming down herself. She looks at him, sees it’s a flesh wound, and they beam up. Efficiency! But by now Riker’s leg is numb…

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21

Star Trek: The Next Generation Re-Watch: “Up the Long Ladder”

“Up the Long Ladder”
Written by Melinda M. Snodgrass
Directed by Winrich Kolbe

Season 2, Episode 18
Original air date: May 22, 1989
Star date: 42823.2

Mission summary

This episode begins with an S.O.S. This is your only warning.

The strange signal, whose nature Riker instantly guesses despite it taking Starfleet a month, is a call for help used by Earthlings over three hundred years ago. Even though the distress call’s a month old no one has bothered to check it out yet, which winds up having been a strangely prescient move. Alas, Picard decides to save humanity’s “lost sheep,” in between healing some lepers and turning water into synthehol. Worf wants out of this episode and collapses to the floor of the bridge, thereby cementing his role as the most sensible person on this godforsaken boat.

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34

Star Trek: The Next Generation Re-Watch: “Pen Pals”

“Pen Pals”
Written by Melinda M. Snodgrass, story by Hannah Louise Shearer
Directed by Winrich Kolbe

Season 2, Episode 15
Original air date: May 1, 1989
Star date: 42695.3

Mission summary

Enterprise enters the Selcundi Drema sector to investigate unusual geological instabilities that are destroying its planets, and Commander Riker decides this would make a great test of young Wesley Crusher’s ability to command a survey team to study the problem. Wesley is eager as always, but apprehensive about his performance and whether he’s qualified to give orders to officers who are older and more experienced than him. Meanwhile, Data is experimenting with enhancing the ship’s sensors and picks up a troubling transmission: “Is anybody out there?”

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27

Star Trek: The Next Generation Re-Watch: “Unnatural Selection”

“Unnatural Selection”
Written by John Mason and Mike Gray
Directed by Paul Lynch

Season 2, Episode 7
Original air date: January 30, 1989
Star date: 42494.8

Mission summary

With Enterprise en route to Star Station India to meet a Starfleet medical courier, Captain Picard is mulling over Dr. Pulaski, who has been on his ship for about seven episodes. He asks Counselor Troi if he should be worried that the irascible doctor is so good at her job that she might be bad at her job, but Troi assuages his concerns about her new BFF. He grudgingly agrees with her, and a timely distress call may provide the means to discover if he was right after all.

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20

Star Trek: The Next Generation Re-Watch: “The Schizoid Man”

“The Schizoid Man”
Teleplay by Tracy Tormé
Story by Richard Manning and Hans Beimler
Directed by Les Landau

Season 2, Episode 6
Original air date: January 23, 1989
Star date: 42437.5

Mission summary

The Enterprise has been sent on a priority 1 mission to assist Dr. Ira Graves, a cybernetic genius who has fallen ill and whose assistant has sent out a distress signal. But who has time for that when we can have a comic interlude! Troi and La Forge head to Data’s quarters because the android has something to show them.

LAFORGE: Did you damage your face, Data?
DATA: It is a beard, Geordi. A fine, full, dignified beard. One which commands respect and projects thoughtfulness and dignity. Well? Opinions?
TROI: It’s er, very different.
DATA: When I stroke the beard thusly, do I not appear more intellectual?
TROI: I’m sorry, I have to go now. Goodbye.

HEY COME BACK HERE. You have to sit through this, too!

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