|The Next Generation|
|Who Watches the Watchers|
The Enterprise has to service the reactor on Mintaka 3 where a group of anthopologists are studying a native species. I wonder a lot about these reactors. It seems to me that one of the consistent threads in TNG is "we have to service the reactor".
I used to think that the Enterprise was supposed to "go where no one has gone before", but history shows this to be patently false. I now think that the Enterprise is a 24th century version of a LubeMobile.
Still, unsurprisingly the place blows up, and Warp 7 is upped to Warp 9 to get them their to help. Why only Warp 9? When being chased by the Borg they got to Warp 9.35. Clearly Picard wants to conserve petrol and not waste our fossil fuels.
We cut to the planet to see Leyland Palmer. Oops sorry wrong series. Well it looks a lot like Twin Peaks' Leyland Palmer with some heavy duty bone sculpturing. This is what happens boys and girls if you let yourself get possessed and kill your daughter. No more a threat need be made!
Do you remember the series Automan? One of the best lines from it, concerning holograms was "if you give it enough power it will even feel real". Well I suppose that if you want to use 9E16 joules to get a kilo of matter it is possible, but TNG seems to have got the Automan trick too! One of the proto-Vulcans touches the hologram covering the blind - and it stops her!
I think that TNG is trying to force everyone of the crew to break the Prime Directive. So far Wes and Picard (and I am sure Riker, but I can't remember a specific occasion) have, and this week it is the turn of Dr Beverly Crusher. I personally would hang her on the yard arm next to Picard and her useless son, but this is a PGR rated program and we can't have all this violence.
At least Bev did it for humanitarianistic reasons, and Picard comes out with one of his all time best lines: "Why didn't you let him die?". Why didn't Picard let Wesley die, the selfish bastard.
It also seemed odd that they were helping at alien race who named their children things like "Orgy". Don't tell me that it means something else in their language, because it was quite clear that they spoke English!
We are told that around the blind is a carst topography with sink hole, underground rivers and caverns and then in his next breath, Data (does he really breathe?) says that the ground is rich in Thalium compounds which is upsetting their scan. How then did he know that their were underground anythings?
Unbelievably, the proto-Vulcans decide to worship Picard as a God. With that in mind, I feel that the only humane way to undo the damage that they have done with cultural corruption is Phasers from space. Anyone who worships Picard deserves to die.
Picard comes up with another classic line: "...uphold the Prime Directive, if necessary with our lives...". The typical double standard. This only seems to apply to non-crew-members of the Enterprise, or else he would have let Wesley die! Do I seem to harp on this point? Who cares!!!
Riker decides to help the injured Palmer by binding one of the locals and taking Palmer away so they can be beamed up in private - I've never heard it called that before. So why didn't he just stand behind the bound local and do it there? Why did he insist on carrying Palmer outside? I surmise it is because he would not have been caught if he did it inside. Riker must have a represessed guilt complex so he subconsciously wants to get caught! Either that or he is just plain stupid.
The bronze-age bowman who comes after him is carrying an interesting artifact - a 20th century bow! Look at it carefully. It is double strung with pullies and has an efficient shape. Amazing! I wonder sometimes how we humans ever got so far!
The locals decide to kill Troi to appease Picard, be we are left wondering whether they intended to BBQ her, then shoot her, or vice versa or what. Just in the nick of time Picard arrives, and gets shot by Liko. What a crappy shot. He should have got Picard between the eyes, but instead we have a minor shoulder wound. Mind you that would have left Riker as temporary captain of the ship, and I'm not sure that would have been for the better.