Jump to content

Recommended Posts

Star Trek: The Next Generation


Patrick Stewart as Captain Jean-Luc Picard
Jonathan Frakes 
as Commander William T. Riker
Brent Spiner 
as Lieutenant-Commander Data
LeVar Burton 
as Lieutenant-Commander Geordi La Forge
Michael Dorn 
as Helmsman and Chief Security Officer Worf
Gates McFadden 
as Chief Medical Officer Beverly Crusher
Marina Sirtis 
as Counselor Deanna Troi
Wil Wheaton as Ensign Wesley Crusher
Denise Crosby 
as Security Chief Tasha Yar
Diana Muldaur 
as Chief Medical Officer Katherine Pulaski
Colm Meaney
 as Transporter Chief Miles O'Brien
Whoopi Goldberg 
as Bartender Guinan

Season 1: Sep 28, 1987 - May 16, 1988 - Executive Producer: Gene Roddenberry

1.1 and 1.2 - "Encounter at Farpoint" - Sep. 28, 1987 - Screenshot 2017-07-30 at 2.01.30 PM.pngScreenshot 2017-08-01 at 10.33.22 AM.png

Directed by Corey Allen (Buzz Gunderson in "Rebel without a Cause," Primetime Emmy Award Winner for Outstanding Directing for a Drama Series for "Goodbye, Mr. Scripps" on "Hill Street Blues," Primetime Emmy Award Nominee for Outstanding Directing for a Drama Series for "Jungle Madness" on "Hill Street Blues"), Written by - Teleplay: Dorothy Fontana (Writer of 10 episodes of "Star Trek"), Story: Gene Roddenberry (Creator of "Star Trek")
Featuring John de Lancie as Q (TV Executive in "The Fisher King," Donald Margolis in "Breaking Bad"), Michael Bell as Groppler Zorn (Voice of Chas Finster in "Rugrats"), DeForest Kelley as Dr. Leonard "Bones" McCoy (H. Norbert Willis in "The Clover Throne" and Bob Harcourt, Jr. in "1800 Days to Justice" on "Route 66"), Cary-Hiroyuki Tagawa as Court Bailiff (Chang in "The Last Emperor")

[Star Trek or not, this Pilot was *rough* - both in terms of the acting (Troi was awful, Q functioned not only as a God-like being, but also as some sort of "nanny chorus," telling us what we didn't need to be told, and Data was seen grinning on more than one occasion (remember how awful Spock was, at first, in the original series - he was grinning too)). My biggest problem here wasn't the plot; it was the condescension of Q, telling the viewer what they're about to figure out for themselves - that is elementary-school TV. This was largely a very interesting plot, but the writers spoiled it for the viewers. I do wonder just how much the creators, e.g., Gene Roddenberry, had in mind when it came to essentially building the entire series around Q -  could Roddenberry possibly have envisioned the glorious final episode before the series even began? Nah ....]

1.3 -  "The Naked Now" - Oct. 5, 1987 - Screenshot 2017-07-31 at 10.37.47 PM.pngScreenshot 2017-07-31 at 11.04.53 PM.png

Directed by Paul Lynch (Director of "Prom Night"), Written by - Teleplay: Dorothy Fontana (2), Story: John D.F. Black (Co-Writer and Associate Producer of "The Naked Time" on "Star Trek")
Featuring Brooke Bundy as Sarah MacDougal (Leah in "Firecreek," Elaine Parker on "A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors"), Benjamin W.S. Lum as Jim Shimoda (Kim Mei Clerk in "Another 48 Hrs.")

["The Naked Time" was George Takei's personal-favorite episode on "Star Trek," as he got to have fun prancing around the decks, shirtless, as a swashbuckler. That episode was written by John D.F. Black, and because of that, he was given credit for having written the story for this episode, a "parallel" version written for The Next Generation. In case anyone has forgotten, this is the one where "Data Does Dasha" (sorry, Tasha, and not to be confused by a porn movie with a similar-sounding name) - him being an android, one can only imagine his thrusts-per-minute - Tasha looked pretty tired when she emerged from her quarters. The Pilot featured a cameo by McCoy; this episode has a verbal reference to Kirk - this was undoubtedly to "ease seasoned viewers into" this new and very different series - it seems like a wise and prudent decision. The "Acting Captain Wesley Crusher" scene may have been the beginning of the hatred for Wesley hijacking the series (according to people who didn't like him; to me, his "precocious genius" got a bit annoying, but never went so far overboard that I couldn't stand him, plus he redeemed himself as the series progressed).]

1.4 - "Code of Honor" - Oct. 12, 1987 - Screenshot 2017-08-01 at 7.24.37 PM.pngScreenshot 2017-08-01 at 7.22.13 PM.png

Directed by Russ Mayberry (Director of "Unidentified Flying Oddball") and Les Landau (Assistant Director of "Leadbelly"), Written by Katharyn Powers (Writer of "The Longest Drive" for "The Quest") and Michael Baron (BS Degree in Organizational Systems Management from California State University, Northridge)
Featuring Jessie Lawrence Ferguson as Lutan (Calder in "Prince of Darkness"), Karole Selmon as Yareena (Homeless Woman #1 in "The Soloist"), Julian Christopher as Hagon (Prison Truck Guard #1 in "X-Men: The Last Stand")

[A very poor episode in the weakest season of the series, "Code of Honor" features bad writing, bad direction, and acting that should have - and could have - been stronger. I can't remember the last time I had to hunt this deeply for something else - anything else - the directors, writers, and actors did outside of "The Next Generation," and it's a shame that *this* has to be the episode with the most primitive black stereotypes in this normally equitable series (Ferengi stereotypes notwithstanding). Just look at what I found for the three guest stars - other than Jessie Lawrence Ferguson, it's downright embarrassing to even cite their other acting achievements, especially when all three people did a perfectly decent job in the episode. Karole Selmon is absolutely lovely, and was fine in her role; yet ... "Homeless Woman #1?" Ugh. For one of the writers, Michael Baron, I couldn't find *anything* else he did, so I simply listed his degree, and then when I researched Cal State Northridge, I couldn't even find the degree. Interestingly, Patrick Stewart is in "X-Men: The Last Stand," and I'm wondering if his influence helped Julian Christopher get his role (Prison Truck Guard #1? Ugh). I'm not very politically correct, but this episode makes even me cringe, and I'm wondering if it should have ever been made in the first place. I don't know of a good way to put this, so I'll just come out and say it: Denise Crosby has too much air time in these first three episodes. The most laughably bad moment in the episode? When millions of people are about to die, Tasha is about to engage in a fight to the death, the Enterprise is in a gravely acute diplomatic crisis with the Ligonians, and Riker - who is acting captain - has just finished making a silent soliloquy about the gravity of the situation. Then, the turbolift doors in the bridge open, and Wesley Crusher is standing there, grinning. Riker greets him as if he were working the registration desk at the Four Seasons in Fiji, smiles warmly, and says, "Care to lend a hand? Sit at ops," as he waves Wesley onto the bridge, gets onto the turbolift himself, and exits the scene with this young child strolling over to the control panel, unattended. Are you kidding me?]

1.5 - "The Last Outpost" - Oct. 19, 1987 - Screenshot 2017-08-02 at 11.07.32 PM.pngScreenshot 2017-08-02 at 11.08.11 PM.png

Directed by Richard A. Colla (Director of "Olly Olly Oxen Free"), Written by Richard Krzemien (Writer of "Kentucky Rye" for "The New Twilight Zone")
Featuring Armin Shimerman as Letek (Stan the Caddy in "The Caddy" on "Seinfeld"), Jake Dengel as Mordoc (Pee Wee in "Ironweed"), Tracey Walter as Keyron (Lamar in "Silence of the Lambs"), Darryl Henriques as Portal 63 (Life Reporter in "The Right Stuff"), Mike Gomez as DaiMon Tarr (Auto Circus Cop in "The Big Lebowski")

[Note: After these first 5 episodes (I'm calling the pilot episodes 1-2), I don't know how this show survived the rest of 1987. I don't think I'd ever seen any of these except for "The Naked Now," and they are all ... just ... largely ... bad. I've actually forgotten, at this point, why I ever liked this show so much. Leigh, I'm very much looking forward to watching the entire first half of Season One (which hasn't been terribly fun), and then purchasing Wil Wheaton's book - it should be the perfect quick read for me when I'm finished. I do think "The Last Outpost" is the second consecutive episode where TNG has reinforced negative stereotypes about a human ethnicity of people (with the Ferengi, you can pick your ethnicity, but they're surely being mocked as "short little mercantile, conniving opportunists who won't hesitate to cheat others"). I don't remember how I initially reacted to the Ferengi appearing on the view-screen as giants, but it certainly echoed, and was influenced by, "The Corbomite Maneuver" in The Original Series, except that Balok was just a wonderful person - the type of guy you'd enjoy sharing a glass of tranya with. My problem, in general, with the Ferengi is that the series makes them just a little too easy to hate, and there's no complexity to them at all - they're defined in black-and-white, shallow, and (I guess the current term among Millenials is, "basic"). Also, it's somewhat painful to see them jumping up, down, all-around while Riker is trying to have a discussion with Portal 63. Sure, they've now been established as a race of entities you'll hate upon their very mention, but isn't that just a little too convenient? Looking back, after having watched every episode (I've written this summary at different times), I don't remember a single moment of honor among them.]

1.6. "Where No One Has Gone Before" - Oct. 26, 1987 - Screenshot 2018-08-05 at 14.55.12.pngScreenshot 2018-08-05 at 15.37.18.pngScreenshot 2018-08-05 at 15.39.46.png

Directed by Rob Bowman (4 consecutive Primetime Emmy Award Nominee for Outstanding Drama Series for "The X-Files"), Written by Diane Duane (Writer of the "Young Wizards" novels) and Michael Reeves (Daytime Emmy Award Winner for Outstanding Writing in an Animated Program for "Batman: the Animated Series")
Featuring Stanley Kamel as Kosinski (Dr. Charles Kroeger on "Monk"), Eric Menyuk as The Traveler (Carney in "Der Roachenkavalier" on "Hill Street Blues"), Herta Ware as Maman Yvette Picard (Rosie Lefkowitz in "Cocoon"), Biff Yeager as Chief Engineer Argyle (George in "Edward Scissorhands")

[When Troi, Ryker, and Argyle go to meet Kosinski and The Traveler in the transporter room, the cinematography, lighting, and camera angle is all wrong (see the first picture above). In the "Awkward Scene of the Episode," when The Traveler says to Wesley Crusher, "Something troubles you with the way this is configured?" there is silence, as Crusher sits there nodding for four full seconds which seem like an eternity. This episode clearly borrows something from "2001: A Space Odyssey," as the Enterprise is jettisoned one-billion light years away, in an unknown part of the universe which features fantastic lights outside the ship (see the 3rd picture), and where ideas come to life in the form of terrifyingly real characters from times past. Wesley is introduced to the viewers by The Traveler as a Mozart-like genius, to be nurtured (but not informed) by Picard - this sets the stage for him being a Boy Wonder in future episodes. Kamel overacts as the annoyingly arrogant Kosinski, both while intractably cocky, and also while reduced to a blubbering "I didn't mean to do that," before he gets largely elbowed out of the episode - why he wasn't taken into quarters, I'm not sure.] 

7. "Lonely Among Us" - Nov. 2, 1987: electrified%2Bworf.JPG

8. "Justice" - Nov. 9, 1987: justice1-600x459.jpg

[Note: In "Justice," Worf's comment at 5:58 on Amazon, "Nice planet," was the first laugh-out-loud funny moment I've ever had in any Star Trek episode, from either series. I want to take shore leave on this planet. This series is improving, markedly.]

9. "The Battle" - Nov. 16, 1987: battle115-300x230.jpg

10. "Hide and Q" - Nov. 23, 1987: 500px-Tngmusket01.jpg

11. "Haven" - Nov. 30, 1987: tumblr_loatme154f1qmaofno1_500.jpg

[Note: Some of these recent episodes were panned by some reputable online sources; I, on the other hand, remember again why I like TNG after watching them. In "Hide and Q," Worf proved himself to be one of the great heroes of the series. Leigh, I assume Majel Barrett will redeem herself later in the series? There's nothing, nothing at all, to like about her in this episode.]

12. "The Big Goodbye" - Jan. 11, 1988: 320x2401.jpg

[Note: Does anyone know why there was such a gap between episodes 11 and 12?]

13. "Datalore" - Jan. 18, 1988: Datalore.jpg

[Note: This is the final episode covered in Wil Wheaton's book, so if you've made it to here, buy the book.]

14. "Angel One" - Jan 28, 1988 - star_trek_tng14.jpg?itok=sJK-dIpN

15. "11001001" - Feb. 1, 1988: ST-TNG_11001001.jpg

[Note: It's not the first season that's bad; it's only the first few episodes - the critics are wrong, and I'm loving this. In this highly structured, almost military environment, a logical person might assume that, at this point, the wonky holodeck might become prohibited, but, meh, to heck with logic.]

16. "Too Short A Season" - Feb. 8, 1988 - 08b3.jpg

1.17 - "When the Bough Breaks" - Feb. 15, 1988 - Screenshot 2017-08-03 at 4.30.07 PM.pngScreenshot 2017-08-04 at 12.03.55 AM.png
Directed by Kim Manners (Director and/or Producer of 132 episodes of "The X-Files" (xx)), Written by Hannah Louise Shearer (Writer of "Q-Less" on "Star Trek: Deep Space Nine")
Featuring Jerry Hardin as Radue (Deep Throat on "The X-Files" (xx)), Brenda Strong as Rashella (1980 Miss Arizona, Sue Ellen Mischke on "Seinfeld" (xx), Mary Alice Young on "Desperate Housewives," Ilene Stowe on "Fear the Walking Dead"), Jandi Swanson as Katie (Jenny Drake on "Baywatch"), Paul Lambert as Melian (Washington Post National Editor in "All the President's Men"), Ivy Bethune as Duana (Evelyn Tuttle on "Father Murphy"

[I get the concept of cloaking a planet visually by bending light rays, but ... isn't there this other force called "gravity?" Regardless, Riker is positively thrilled at the possibility (and realization) of finding the mythical planet Aldea, something akin to Atlantis. "When the Bough Breaks" is an unheralded, but extremely strong, episode with a fine writer in Hannah Louise Shearer, a talented director in Kim Manners, and the sometimes-hilarious, always-alluring presence of Brenda Strong (who guest-starred with Armin Shimerman in the very funny episode, "The Caddy," on "Seinfeld" (Strong is in the first photo up above). You'll see, in the first ten minutes of this episode, that it stands above the norm, and that the slow-starting first season is (and has been) fully on-track - there is beauty, mystery, intrigue, and especially after the uninvited visit to the Enterprise, Hitchcockian suspense, animated by the telepathic powers of Counselor Troi (you get a glimpse here of how effective Troi becomes in later seasons, after getting off to such a clumsy beginning). A subtly hilarious moment occurs right after a little girl named Alexandra disappears - the next scene shows a girl playing a musical instrument, and when she disappears, the instrument simply tips over: This is absolutely a "You have to see it to appreciate it" moment, but if it doesn't slip by you (and it easily could), you might find it laugh-out-loud funny - there's obviously a stagehand holding the instrument who forces it to tip over. It is remarkable just how much Wesley has aged since Episode 1 - he has clearly entered puberty, and has gone from being a boy to a young man in just a few, short months. I'm not certain, but this episode seems to contain a very early reference to the lethal potential of climate change - how many dramas can you think of that mentioned it nearly thirty years ago?]

1.18 - "Home Soil" - Feb. 22, 1988 - Screenshot 2017-02-10 at 11.06.21 PM.png
Directed by Corey Allen (Buzz Gunderson in "Rebel without a Cause," Emmy Award for Directing "Goodbye, Mr. Scripps" on "Hill Street Blues"), Written by: Teleplay - Robert Sabaroff (Writer of "The Immunity Syndrome" on "Star Trek"), Story - Robert Sabaroff, Karl Geurs (Director and Co-Writer of "Pooh's Grand Adventure: The Search for Christopher Robin"), Ralph Sanchez (Writer and Executive Producer of "Boxcars")
Featuring Walter Gotell (Second Officer of the Königin Luise in "The African Queen," Oberleutnant Muesel in "The Guns of Navarone," Hans Lasser in "The Hi-Jackers" on "The Saint" (xx), Morzeny in "From Russia with Love," General Gogol in six "James Bond" films), Elizabeth Lindsey (Miss Hawaii, 1978), Gerard Prendergast (Erik Slade on "Summer"), Mario Rocuzzo (Angelo in "The Locket" on "All in the Family" (xx), Andrew in "Goodbye, Mr. Scripps" on "Hill Street Blues" (xx)), Carolyn Barry (The Metron in "Arena" on "Star Trek" (xx))

19. "Coming of Age" - March 14, 1988 -star_trek_tng_19.jpg

20. "Heart of Glory" - March 21, 1988 - heartofglory2-600x458.jpg

21. "Arsenal of Freedom" - April 11, 1988 - Vincentschiavelli.jpg

[Note: "Get Off My Train!"]

22. "Symbiosis" - April 18, 1988 - 320x240.jpg

23. "Skin of Evil" - April 25, 1988 - ST-TNG_Skin_of_Evil.jpg

[Note: RIP, TY.]

24. "We'll Always Have Paris" - May 2, 1988 - well+aleays.jpg

[Note: That's Michelle Phillips from "The Mamas and The Papas."]

25. "Conspiracy" - May 9, 1988 - articlelist_250.jpg

[Note: My first question: The "homing beacon sent from earth comment at the very end ... what did that imply? It sounds ominous, but nothing seemed to pan out from it in later shows that I'm aware of, so ...? (Answers will be Spoilers)"]

26. "The Neutral Zone" - May 16, 1988 - tng-theneutralzone1.jpg?w=468

[Note: And that's a wrap for season one.]

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Anyone interested should read Wil Wheaton's Memories of the Future. It grew out of the recaps of TNG he wrote for TWoP (I think) where he went back and watched them in order. By the time he was part way through the first season, he decided to write a book. It's only half the first season; he's working on Volume II, which will round out Season 1. He also has a podcast that goes along with it. It is frakking hilarious. If you're a TNG fan and haven't read/listened to it, get thee hence now. It's only $4.99 on Kindle directly, or you can buy it from his site and get a PDF to read anywhere. 

Don: please please please add the wonderful John DeLancie (Q) and Majel Barrett (Lwaxana Troi) to the tags.  :)

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Don: please please please add the wonderful John DeLancie (Q) and Majel Barrett (Lwaxana Troi) to the tags.   :)

:)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Majel Barrett was one of the nicest actors I've ever had the pleasure of meeting. DeLancie... was not.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Majel Barrett was one of the nicest actors I've ever had the pleasure of meeting. DeLancie... was not

This does not really surprise me.

[Note: After these first 5 episodes (I'm calling the pilot episodes 1-2), I don't know how this show survived the rest of 1987. I don't think I'd ever seen any of these except for "The Naked Now," and they are all ... just ... flat-out ... horrible. I've actually forgotten, at this point, why I ever liked this show so much. Leigh, I'm very much looking forward to watching the entire first half of Season One (which is about as much fun as practicing this Bach Fugue I'm studying), and then purchasing Wil Wheaton's book - it should be The perfect quick read for me when I'm finished. I have to give myself a pat on the back and say, immodestly, that I'm picking *very* good pictures - enough to jostle the viewer's memory without giving anything away (although I'm not sure any single picture could give away much).]

Most of them didn't think they WOULD last. Several of the main cast have done the Nerdist podcast and since he is a fan (and actually a good friend of Wil Wheaton's) he gets into it with most of them -- Dorn, Stewart, Burton, and Spiner, at least. To a man, they all say they really did not think it would go anywhere. But they're all rather glad it did!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

A general question: How is it that communications (which includes beaming up) are responded to - no matter where, when, or how - in less than one second?

In "Angel One," for example, the initial Enterprise communication with the planet was answered in less than two seconds. A Federation Starship had not visited the planet in 62 years; yet, they're answering an unannounced hail in less than two seconds?

In the same episode, when Data beamed up (shortly after the prisoners were condemned to death), his communication - which came out of nowhere - resulted in a beam-up in less than one second (this, when most of the crew is flattened by a respiratory ailment).

This is consistent from episode-to-episode (unless, of course, there is a problem with communications that's built into the plot - which usually means no communications at all).

I know, I know, network time constraints - but this is just wrong.

Does anyone know why "Too Short A Season" is titled as such?

Also, when a floating pod (refer to "The Arsenal Of Freedom") is able to move laterally to avoid a phaser shot outdoors, is there any reason why the person firing the phaser can't simply adjust the shot laterally in a sweeping motion, or does every single phaser shot have to be performed with a locked elbow and shoulder, dead-ahead, and if you miss, you miss?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Anyone interested should read Wil Wheaton's Memories of the Future

Leigh, will I lose anything if I delay in buying the book? I've finished Datalore which is the last story, and would love to finish the two books I'm working on before beginning another, even if it's just an "afternoon book." If it shows how much I cherish my books, I will probably pay twice as much and purchase this in a bound edition.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm trying to blast through BBC's "Spooks" but may join you on this journey when I finish that.  My favorite TNG episode of all time is "The Inner Light"

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Years ago, I was watching C-SPAN coverage of some committee hearing and LeVar Burton was one of the people testifying.  I believe the topic was funding for public television, Burton of course having long time involvement with Reading Rainbow.  Anyhoo, the PBS executive who testified next kept referring to Burton as Geordi, much to her great embarrassment when LeVar gently reminded her that his name was in fact Levar.

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Leigh, will I lose anything if I delay in buying the book? I've finished Datalore which is the last story, and would love to finish the two books I'm working on before beginning another, even if it's just an "afternoon book." If it shows how much I cherish my books, I will probably pay twice as much and purchase this in a bound edition.

No, you won't lose anything. He's so far behind on the second book -- as in, who knows when it will come out --  there is not really any rush. I don't think this one actually exists in a print edition, honestly. But go to Wil's website when you're ready to get it; it's worth it.

I'm trying to blast through BBC's "Spooks" but may join you on this journey when I finish that.  My favorite TNG episode of all time is "The Inner Light"

Stewart should honestly have won an Emmy for "The Inner Light." It's a gorgeous, wonderfully acted episode.(I also think his acting in the episode "Family" is wonderful, although that whole episode is a bit overwritten.

(Fun fact: the kid who plays his nephew in that episode ends up playing the younger version of himself in the episode "Rascals" several seasons later. Another fun fact: I didn't have to look that up.)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm enamored with the idea of living a whole other life in a dream.  What a blessing.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Star Trek: The Next Generation - Season 2

1. "The Child" - November 21, 1988 - TNG127.jpg

[Note: Wow, what changes - Dr. Pulaski instead of Dr. Crusher, Chief O'Brian in as Transporter Chief, Guinan as the Bartender of Ten Forward, and of course Riker's beard - I've figured out that females are either "beard girls" or "not beard girls," with little in between - Riker is such a handsome man; I think it's a shame he grew the beard, but I suspect a high percentage of females love it.]

2. "When Silence Has Lease" - November 28, 1988 - Nagilum.jpg

3. "Elementary, Dear Data" - December 5, 1988 - 46536.jpg

4. "The Outrageous Okona" - December 12, 1988 - outrageousokona1-300x229.jpg

[Note: What a perfectly cast, Hans Solo-esque character - he's enough to make me wish I was gay.]

5. "Loud As A Whisper" - January 9, 1989 - ST-TNG_Loud_as_a_Whisper.jpg

[Note: Howie Seago (who played Riva, standing on the left) is deaf in real-life. Still, Marlee Matlin (of Children of a Lesser God) beat him to the punch by three years.]

6. "The Schizoid Man" - January 23, 1989 - Data+and+Grandpa.jpg

[Note: Did anyone notice the obvious? When Data appeared to announce the death of Dr. Graves, his shirt had changed color from gold to red? Nowhere, anywhere, on the internet can I find any mention of this. Does anyone have anything evident to the contrary, or any thoughts about it in general?]

7. "Unnatural Selection" - January 30, 1989 - tng-unnaturalselection9.jpg

[Note: I swear that I don't want Dr. Pulaski to die a painful death; I just want her off the show.]

8. "A Matter Of Honor" - February 6, 1989 - 320x240.jpg

[Note: At the 40:00 mark (on Amazon.com), there's a mistake I haven't seen reported elsewhere: Look at Worf's right hand, resting on the rail as the Klingon captain beams aboard. He removes it from the rail, then, in the next scene, while Picard and others stand up, his hand is back on the rail, and he removes it a second time - you have to watch the scene 2-3 times to pick it up, but it's very obvious once you do.]

9. "Measure Of A Man" - February 13, 1989 - 9+-+measure+of+a+man.jpg

10. "The Dauphin" - February 20, 1989 - tng2-10.jpg

[Note: I think this is one of the most pure first-love stories I've ever seen, anywhere, and anyone who "hates Wesley" needs to reevaluate that hatred after seeing this. I love this episode. Also, it contains what I think is the single most hilarious thing I've yet seen on Star Trek (either on TOS or TNG): Worf's "advice" which begins (on Amazon Prime) at 11:50 and runs through 12:35. It is HI-*LAR*-I-OUS! Michael Dorn deserved an Emmy *just for this one scene*.]

11. "Contagion" - March 20, 1989 - tng-contagion6.jpg

12. "The Royale" - March 27, 1989 - post-2-0-81900800-1447527989_thumb.png <-- "There is a certain degree of random fortune involved - I believe that is why they call it 'gambling.'"

Directed by Cliff Bole, Written by Tracy Tomé (as Keith Mills), startrek.com

[Note: -291 Celsius? Not possible, at least not in the universe we know. You know what's interesting? There's something special about the number "18" when converting Celsius-to-Farenheit (10 degrees Celsius is 18 degrees Farenheit), and the difference between -291 and -273 degrees (i.e., Absolute Zero) is exactly 18 degrees Celsius off. I believe the writers got confused by 10 degrees, and also somehow crossed-up Farenheit and Celsius, hence, the 18-degree discrepancy. Also, Fermat's Last Theorem has been (theoretically, and maybe kinda-sorta) proven which is pretty remarkable considering the writers probably didn't think it would be.

If you want to read interesting, thoughtful reviews of both TOS and TNG, go to Zack Hendlen's writings on avclub.com. I don't always 100%-agree with Zack, but his reviews are always thoughtful, and always interesting reading - the Star Trek blogosphere is much better off because of him and his writing.]

13. "Time Squared" - April 3, 1989 - 500px-USS_Enterprise-D_consumed_by_energ

14. "The Icarus Factor" - April 24, 1989 - star_trek_tng_2-15.jpg

15. "Pen Pals" - May 1, 1989 - 500px-Sarjenka_and_Data.jpg

16. "Q-Who?" - May 8, 1989 - qwho177.jpg

[Note: This is where the series takes root.]

17. "Samaritan Snare" - May 15, 1989 - 46550.jpg

18. "Up The Long Ladder" - May 22, 1989 - 1267467255146_f.jpg

[Note: At 20:05 on Amazon, when the lovely red-haired, Irish-hillbilly lass (pictured) looked up at Riker, she noticed he had an erection! If you don't believe me, then watch it several times. Furthermore, Prime Minister Wilson is played by Thomas Keller.]

19. "Manhunt" - June 19, 1989 - star_trek_tng_2-18.jpg

[Note: At 20:25 on Amazon, Picard - in a *very* Shakespearean manor (and I probably wouldn't have picked up on this if we hadn't been discussing Shakespeare) - says, "There must be some way to convince her ... that tits ... quite impossible." Listen for yourselves - there's *no doubt* in my mind that this is a Shakespeare-influenced quibble, and it's both bawdy and brilliant. "Dixon Hill" indeed....]

20. "The Emissary" - Jun 26, 1989 - theemissary.jpg

21. "Peak Performance" - July 10, 1989 - star_trek_tng_2-20_0.jpg

22. "Shades of Gray" - July 17, 1989 - tng2-22.jpg

[Note: Obviously, the writers were on summer holiday for this final episode of the second season which is nothing more than a glorified compilation, and one of the most unrewarding episodes I've ever seen.]

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I agree with most, but not all of these. (Points to anyone who knows/guesses which ones I *don't* agree with!)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I agree with most, but not all of these. (Points to anyone who knows/guesses which ones I *don't* agree with!)

You know what? I know you well enough to guess correctly, but not until I finish methodically working my way through the series which will take goodness-knows how long (I do hope people notice that I'm updating my posts as I traverse the series). I think I can safely say that you *do* agree with "The Naked Now" being on that list, but even at midway through season 2, I can pick out worse episodes than that ("Code Of Honor," for example).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You know what? I know you well enough to guess correctly, but not until I finish methodically working my way through the series which will take goodness-knows how long (I do hope people notice that I'm updating my posts as I traverse the series). I think I can safely say that you *do* agree with "The Naked Now" being on that list, but even at midway through season 2, I can pick out worse episodes than that ("Code Of Honor," for example).

You're right about "Naked Now", although I also feel like anything from Season 1 is slightly unfair given that they are almost page-for-page retreads of TOS episodes. Still, "Naked Now" is so much worse than "Naked Time" that it deserves to be on the list.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Rocks, I hope you make it past the first two seasons.  Inspired by this thread, I recently watched two of my favorite episodes again, "Yesterday's Enterprise" (season 3) and "Disaster" (season 5).  Next up: Star Trek: Die Hard (actually, "Starship Mine", season 6), which I hope lives up to my memories...  By season 6 the writers and actors had loosened up a lot; both writing and acting seemed a lot more natural.  Heck, event Troi began developing a personality.

Let us know what you think of "Yesterday's Enterprise", which I think was one of their best, despite the brief return of a disliked character.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Forgot to mention - my friend Keith was contracted by TOR to do a "rewatch" of all of the TNG episodes, and has since completed that and moved on to DS9, where he's most of the way through season 4 at this point.

Good stuff.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Rocks, I hope you make it past the first two seasons.  Inspired by this thread, I recently watched two of my favorite episodes again, "Yesterday's Enterprise" (season 3) and "Disaster" (season 5).  Next up: Star Trek: Die Hard (actually, "Starship Mine", season 6), which I hope lives up to my memories...  By season 6 the writers and actors had loosened up a lot; both writing and acting seemed a lot more natural.  Heck, event Troi began developing a personality.

Let us know what you think of "Yesterday's Enterprise", which I think was one of their best, despite the brief return of a disliked character.

Porcupine, "Yesterday's Enterprise" is one of my favorites! And I like "Disaster" too, but I think "Starship Mine" is better? Well, no. They are both very Picard-centric, the latter more so. And that's always good in my book. (Counterpoint: I love a lot of Beverly-centric episodes, like "Remember Me" (warp bubble), but "Sub Rosa" is vile vile vile.)

Forgot to mention - my friend Keith was contracted by TOR to do a "rewatch" of all of the TNG episodes, and has since completed that and moved on to DS9, where he's most of the way through season 4 at this point.

Good stuff.

I want that job.

Y'all might also enjoy this TNG informatic.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I want that job.

A lot of us probably do, but you get that job by first being a professional writer, then getting contracts to write a bunch of other Star Trek and related media stuff, and then they think of you when they have the idea to pay someone to watch and report.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Star Trek: The Next Generation - Season 3

1. "Evolution" - Sep 25, 1989 - 162731.jpg

2. "The Ensigns Of Command" - Oct 2, 1989 - TNG149.jpg

3. "The Survivors" - Oct 9, 1989 - 320x240.jpg

4. "Who Watches The Watchers?" - Oct 16, 1989 - post-2-0-39507700-1447332427_thumb.png <-- "I wish you good journeys, Picard. Please remember my people." "Always."

Directed by Robert Wiemer, Written by Richard Manning and Hans Beimler - startrek.com

5. "The Bonding" - Oct 23, 1989 - 500px-TNG3.05TheBonding.jpg

[Note: Okay, not the best episode, but not the worst, and the first one that brought a tear to my eye, damn it.]

6. "Booby Trap" - Oct 30, 1989 - tumblr_lgp5m1DL8n1qfw225.jpg

[Note: The saddest episode is followed up by one of the sweetest, and a wonderful piece of foreshadowing by Guinan in explaining why she likes bald men.]

7. "The Enemy" - Nov 6, 1989 - 1735775315_The_Enemy_answer_4_xlarge.jpe

[Note: So far, this might be my single favorite TNG episode in the first 2+ seasons - multilayered, not obvious, and edge-of-your-seat tense throughout. I'd never seen it before, and I was completely drawn into it. Worf had a strong sub-role, and Geordi was magnificent as the lead.]

8. "The Price" - Nov 13, 1989 - theprice1-300x229.jpg

[Note: Am I wrong for having a crush on Counselor Troi?]

9. "The Vengeance Factor" - Nov 20, 1989 - thevengeancefactor195.jpg

10. "The Defector" - Jan 1, 1990 - bbd94bea12ba19d60bbe098ad6f88374.jpg

11. "The Hunted" - Jan 8, 1990 - thehunted109.jpg

[Notes: I could rave, in a great amount of specifics, about any of these three past episodes. Instead, I'll say that this has become a great series which I *love* watching. I truly hope everyone enjoys the pictures I've selected - it hasn't been easy. The picture must be small enough to fit on one line (my own personal rule); yet, they must be revealing enough to give a hint as to the episodes' plots without giving them away. [if anyone has pictures they feel are more appropriate, please send them to me. I can't help feeling that I could have selected a better picture from "The Vengeance Factor," but what? I'm *always* open to suggestions.]]

12. "The High Ground" - Jan 29, 1990 - tng3-12.jpg

13. "Deja Q" - Feb 5, 1990 - q-pic2.gif

14. "A Matter Of Perspective" - Feb 12, 1990 - tng3-14.jpg

15. "Yesterday's Enterprise" - Feb 19, 1990 - trekscreen24.jpg

[Note: porcupine and leleboo - other than the obvious hook, I'm not quite sure why you like this episode as much as you do. I liked the episode well enough, but it didn't occur to me that you had listed it as one of your favorites until several days later. I think I liked "Sins of the Father" every bit as much. Tell me more - I may watch it again.]

16. "The Offspring" - Mar 12, 1990 - ST-TNG_The_Offspring.jpg

17. "Sins of the Father" - Mar 19, 1990 - discommendation-705134.jpg

[Note: Worf just keeps getting better and better, and more important to the series. With episodes such as this, and "The Offspring" (featuring Data), The Next Generation has a chance to develop individual characters to the point where they're all critical to the show's bioprospecting stew.]

18. "Allegiance" - Mar 26, 1990 - 320x240.jpg

19. "Captain's Holiday" - Apr 2, 1990 - Picard_with_horgahn.jpg

20. "Tin Man" - Apr 23, 1990 - 270px-ST-TNG_Tin_Man.jpg

21. "Hollow Pursuits" - Apr 30, 1990 - hollowpursuits-300x228.jpg

[Note: Picard's "metathesis" in this episode might be the funniest moment I've yet seen in the series, and was a brilliantly played piece of acting by Patrick Stewart, too. Picard's "To find some privacy!" outburst in "Captain's Holiday" was a close contender, and Worf's "Klingon-love-ritual" description ("and they hurl heavy objects ....") in "The Dauphin" was right up there, too.]

22. "The Most Toys" - May 7, 1990 - Kivas_Fajo.jpg

[Note: My favorite episode to date, and Brent Spiner's finest moment on the series so far. I think it really helps here to have watched the series, in order, from its unwatchable early days - it's hard to believe The Next Generation got off to such a shaky start, and turned into such wonderful television. The tète-í -tète between Spiner and the great Saul Rubinek at the end was compelling (and you simply can not skip straight to it and watch it, trust me - you'll ruin everything if you do.) Rubinek was absolutely perfect in this role, but he didn't originally have it (Google the background story). What a great episode - Elizabeth and Leigh, where are your thoughts on this?]

23. "Sarek" - May 14, 1990 - 320x240.jpg

24. "Ménage-í -Trois" - May 28, 1990 - mqdefault.jpg

[Note: An off-episode - a badly off-episode - following several such good ones can be dismissed for several reasons: 1) writers going on vacation 2) a swing for the fences that missed, badly 3) comedy relief which failed miserably. Leigh, are you *sure* you want Majel Barrett, bra-cup aside, tagged for this thread? I sure don't see it.]

25. "Transfigurations" - Jun 4, 1990 - 320x240.jpg

26. "The Best Of Both Worlds" - Jun 18, 1990 - 320x240.jpg

[Note: I've seen it before, and I'll say it again: Wow. What an amazing season-ending episode. Again, it helps so much to have gone through the entire series up to this point. This episode was all about Riker, and his final line was edge-of-your-seat thrilling.]

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You know what? I know you well enough to guess correctly, but not until I finish methodically working my way through the series which will take goodness-knows how long (I do hope people notice that I'm updating my posts as I traverse the series). I think I can safely say that you *do* agree with "The Naked Now" being on that list, but even at midway through season 2, I can pick out worse episodes than that ("Code Of Honor," for example).

I also think you *do* agree with "Up The Long Ladder" being on that list. While it wouldn't make my list of worst episodes (not even in the first 2 1/2 seasons), it was pretty darned bad. Am I correct? If nothing else, it was just a mess, and the acting was spaghetti-western quality. Points to Riker for being able to spot a diamond in the rough.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

A lot of us probably do, but you get that job by first being a professional writer, then getting contracts to write a bunch of other Star Trek and related media stuff, and then they think of you when they have the idea to pay someone to watch and report.

Or work for the now-defunct Television Without Pity, or its sort-of successor, Previously.tv. :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Star Trek: The Next Generation - Season 4

 
1. "The Best Of Both Worlds (Part 2)" - Sep 24, 1990 - locutus.jpg

[Note: Wow. One of the most memorable 1-2 punches in television history. Science Fiction at its absolute finest. (Note also: I filled in some comments in Season 3 as I went - please feel free to discuss them, or anything else.)]

2. "Family" - Oct 1, 1990 - 270px-ST-TNG_Family.jpg

[Note: As a Francophile and an oenophile, I absolutely loved this episode, and it provided for much-needed "grounding" after the living hell the Enterprise crew recently went through with the Borg.]

3. "Brothers" - Oct 8, 1990 - 500px-Emotion_chip_-_Noonien_Soong.jpg

4. "Suddenly Human" - Oct 15, 1990 - 320x240.jpg

5. "Remember Me" - Oct 22, 1990 - remember115.jpg

6. "Legacy" - Oct 29, 1990 - Ishara_Yar.jpg

7. "Reunion" - Nov 5, 1990 - nKo9y.jpg

[Note: Perhaps more than any other episode so far, you need to be *really* plugged into The Next Generation series to stay with this one the whole way through. The rewards are there in spades, but there is prerequisite work to be done before watching.]

8. "Future Imperfect" - Nov 12, 1990 - riker_jean-luc-tng-182.jpg

9. "Final Mission" - Dec 2, 1990 - 320x240.jpg

10. "The Loss" - Dec 31, 1990 - 292px-cosmic_string.jpg

[Note: This is the first episode in quite some time that I simply did not like.]

11. "Data's Day" - Jan 7, 1991 - 320x240.jpg

[Note: Make that two in a row.]

12. "The Wounded" - Jan 14, 1991 - thewounded257.jpg

[Note: And we have a winner. Enter the Cardassians.]

13. "Devil's Due" - Feb 4, 1991 - 1285932419015_f.jpg

14. "Clues" - Feb 11, 1991 - 320x240.jpg

[Note: When I'm *this* sure I've figured out the answer, I'm almost always right... *almost*.]

15. "First Contact" - Feb 18, 1991 - Rivas_Jakara.jpg

[Note: Not an important episode so much as an important concept.]

16. "Galaxy's Child" - May 11, 1991 - Junior_attached.jpg

17. "Night Terrors" - Mar 18, 1991 - tng4-17.jpg

[Note: One of my favorite things about Star Trek (both TOS and TNG) is that, despite being great TV, it's cheap escapism. "Night Terrors" tried to cram too much detail into 46 minutes of programming time. It "out-did itself," and could not support this level of complexity in such a short amount of time. Despite a well-meaning plot, this failed in my eyes.]

18. "Identity Crisis" - Mar 25, 1991 - TNG192.jpg

[Note: I hated this episode. Lately, Star Trek has been getting too big for its 46-minute britches, and I've now watched the past two episodes twice each, just so I could figure out what happened. A side note, and it may be because I'm watching these at night when I'm tired, but Zack Handlen's reviews at AV Club are become wearisome. He is starting to employ a strange mixture of being formulaic and rambling at the same time. Must each review be prefaced with "Or, the one where blah-blah-blah does blah-blah-blah to blah-blah-blah?" This is a shame because he has some good insights; it just seems like he's getting tired. If only we had five of him to draw off of, the reviews would be a pleasure to read, but there really aren't that many quality reviewers of The Next Generation - I don't consider these "blurbs" (my blurbs) reviews in any way because, well, they just aren't; they're simple reminders, with an occasional comment thrown in as I see fit. I would love to have been a paid reviewer of this series because I think I could have kicked some serious ass, but that's not the way it worked out - and gone are the days when I was making $40 a *week* being the restaurant reviewer for WETA. No. Just no.]

19. "The Nth Degree" - Apr 1, 1991 - ST-TNG_Nth_Degree.jpg

20. "Qpid" - Apr 22, 1991 - qpid-rm.jpg

[Note: Worf breaking Geordi's lute is a, um, "nod" to this "Animal House" scene (how on earth did Patrick Stewart keep a straight face?)

21. "The Drumhead" - Apr 29, 1991 - tng4-21.jpg

[Note: One of my very favorite episodes so far. A simple, basic principle, retold in a compelling format. Although there are a few prerequisites to fully appreciating "The Drumhead," I suspect this episode stands on its own very nicely. (And, to issue a make-up call on an earlier statement, Handlen's review of this was good (I just wish he'd stop prefacing each review with "Or, the one where ...." because it trivializes things.))

22. "Half A Life" - May 6, 1991 - halflife.jpg

23. "The Host" - May 13, 1991- 270px-ST-TNG_The_Host.jpg

24. "The Mind's Eye" - May 27, 1991 198e.jpg

25. "In Theory" - Jun 3, 1991 320x240.jpg

26. "Redemption" - Jun 17, 1991 - Gowron_attempts_to_recruit_Worf.jpg

[Note: As this final episode of Season 4 was winding down, I was preparing a mental statement to write here, something like, 'If you've watched the entire series (which you absolutely, positively must in order to fully appreciate "Redemption"), this is perhaps the saddest episode of all thus far.' However, as the last few seconds rolled by my eyes, I'm left instead saying ... WTF? ... and very glad I don't have to wait a whole summer to see Part 2.]

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

15. "Yesterday's Enterprise" - Feb 19, 1990 - trekscreen24.jpg

[Note: porcupine and leleboo - other than the obvious hook, I'm not quite sure why you like this episode as much as you do. I liked the episode well enough, but it didn't occur to me that you had listed it as one of your favorites until several days later. I think I liked "Sins of the Father" every bit as much. Tell me more - I may watch it again.]

Star Trek: The Next Generation - Season 4

1. "The Best Of Both Worlds (Part 2)" - Sep 24, 1990 - locutus.jpg

[Note: Wow. One of the most memorable 1-2 punches in television history. Science Fiction at its absolute finest. (Note also: I filled in some comments in Season 3 as I went - please feel free to discuss them, or anything else.)

I had a good discussion all thought out and ready to write, but then even with a personal myfi I couldn't maintain connectivity on the train long enough to write a post... and now it's all gone.  poof!  But I'll try to recapture my thoughts.

If you think "The Best of Both Worlds" is SF at its finest, I'm not sure I can have a discussion with you. ;)   I'd say that episode is an excellent example of the action-adventure sub-genre that I railed against in my post about Europa Report.    I also have a knee jerk reaction against the Borg and Q so I'm a lost cause here.

But about "Yesterday's Enterprise"... one reason I like it is that I also have a knee-jerk reaction against time travel (it is such a narrative crutch most of the time), and yet this episode worked.  It was tight, no holes in the plot.  Also none of the navel-gazing that TNG is so prone to.  Every time you'd start thinking "yes, but [whatever]", they'd have a plausible explanation.  Except maybe Guinan's intuition, that was a little stretched.  But every other aspect of the plot worked.  It was full of tiny details that supported the plot: the crowds on the ship, the rations in 10 Forward, the "military log", no Worf, no Troi (why would you have a counselor on a warship?)  There was no fluff - every thing that happened supported the plot.

SPOILER ALERT

There was a little air of tragedy about it, with a sort of redemption for Tasha.  That she chose death in the hope of accomplishing something good for the Federation, with nothing but someone else's intuition to guide her decision, was a great touch.  I disliked her character from the beginning and although I hated "Skin of Evil" I thought it was a brave thing for the writers to do, to kill her like that.  But to bring her back in this alternate timeline and give her an honorable and meaningful death that would mean something in the other timeline, well, that was just... neat.

From what you've written I think we like different flavors of SF.  Nothing wrong with that.  BTW I didn't care much for Gravity, either.  I don't suppose you've watched Europa Report yet?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×
×
  • Create New...