Blessed Are The Geek


Before he gave his life to the service of the Church, the Reverend Peter Organ dedicated his passion to spaceships, sticker albums, orcs and laser-swords. Now married with two children of his own, he’s yet to find a cassock which covers the geek completely, and wonders how he’s going to explain his Warhammer collection to the Bishop…


Each episode is gets rated from 1 monkey (as bad as a Wesley jumper) to 5 monkeys ("I am Locutus of Borg"). Will I make it through the first season? Time will tell...

 

The Last Outpost

The Ferengi make their début, but they seem to be drinking too much gibbon juice. There’s some unexciting stuff about a defunct empire’s defence system draining the Enterprise’s power too.

A very strange episode. It’s as though they've already decided that the Ferengi aren't really going to be a threat and so introduce the T’Kon Empire subplot, though the portal keeper just comes across as a boring version of the bridge keeper from Monty Python And The Holy Grail. Riker may as well have told the alien what his favourite colour was for all the dramatic resolution we get.

The reason this story gets as much as 2.5 monkeys is really only through historical curiosity, with the introduction of a race that would go on to play a big part in the excellent Deep Space Nine. The Ferengi ship design is nice, though a little Renault Clio-ish complete with big bum, and the alien make-up is good too. There are other aspects that remain unchanged from this first appearance, including the concept of naked females (appearing later in all their orange, wrinkly glory), mentions of the Ferengi acquisitive nature, and Armin Shimerman makes his first appearance in the ears. On the other hand some features are quietly dropped after this story, including the crummy energy whips, and the bizarre movements the Ferengi actors adopt, making them look like chimps with fleas.

Picard: "Merde."

 

 

Where No One Has Gone Before

We’re introduced to The Traveller, who turns the Warp engines up to 11, and leaves the ship in a galaxy far, far away (though not the one with Vader & co).

The Traveller’s ‘handler’, Kosinski is an interesting character, not your normal bland Starfleet type; amusingly obnoxious and rude. A Wesley-heavy episode, but he’s bearable in this and there’s a good reason for his inclusion, resulting in him becoming an Acting Ensign (he’s the warp equivalent of Mozart apparently). Any good feeling towards the boy-genius is crushed (ho ho) by his wearing one of the most horrible orange jumpers in the history of history, and to make matters worse the Traveller is wearing his jim-jams for some reason. 

Thoughts becoming reality in the distant universe is a clever idea and the effects are fun: Worf’s pet Targ is sweet, there’s an interesting glimpse into Yar’s past, along with violin recitals, ballerinas in the shuttle bay & Picard’s scary looking 'Allo 'Allo! accented mum (though the scene is well acted as ever by Stewart). 

The most engaging episode yet. 

The Traveller: “Up until now... you've been uninteresting.” 

 

 

Lonely Among Us 

The Enterprise is transporting two quarrelling alien races to a peace conference (why doesn’t Starfleet use two separate ships?), when an alien energy field infects Worf, and most of the rest of the crew one by one. 

This is the first story where I really didn't remember much of the plot in advance, and there’s a good reason for this. The rubbish dress uniforms début at the beginning (and they do indeed look like dresses, making the male crew look more than a bit undignified). There are nice alien masks for the reptilian Selay, but the Antican dog-dudes are less impressive, and the two barely feature in the plot to be honest, seemingly a pointless bit of padding. 

Data starts his interest in Sherlock Holmes and takes up pipe-smoking, enabling Brent Spiner to do some of the comic acting he’s rather good at, and Troi apparently has a side-line in hypnotism; maybe she does children’s parties? 

Things drag a bit, and the concept of crew members being controlled by an alien is hardly original. Nothing badly wrong with the story, just a pile of meh. 

Dr Crusher: "Wes, you’re only an Acting Ensign. You've got to let the commissioned officers do some of the work." 

 


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The Great Star Trek: TNG Rewatch continues next week!