Star Trek: The Next Generation (1990) – Sins of the Father, and Allegiance

Captain’s log: stardate 43685.2

Sins of the Father marked the beginning of Ronald D. Moore being the go-to guy for Klingon stories, as he pens this one alongside W. Reed Moran, from a story by Drew Deighan.

Commander Kurn (Tony Todd) arrives aboard the Enterprise as part of an officer exchange program, similar to the one Riker (Jonathan Frakes) took part in last season. As we soon discover though, there is more going on than we were first led to believe.

What unfurls becomes a great Worf (Michael Dorn) and Picard (Patrick Stewart) story, as they become involved in Klingon politics when Kurn’s true nature is revealed. Not only is his true identity revealed, we learn more of Worf’s family history, and the disgrace he is willing to accept to maintain the integrity of the Klingon Empire.

It’s a big story, handled incredibly well, and expands the Trek universe nicely in a way that it hadn’t been before. In fact, if they didn’t already have a great season finale coming up, this one could have served nicely.

We learn more about Khitomer, the attack on it, for which Worf’s father is believed to have aided in, and the politics that go on inside the Empire. It’s a lot of fun, and seeing Picard, and Worf, go toe to toe with Duras (Patrick Massett) who is intent on having Worf’s family shoulder the blame for things that weren’t their fault.

This episode paved the way for oh so many Klingon episodes to come, episodes that would add to the tapestry of this honour-worshipping society.

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Captain’s log: stardate 43714.1

Allegiance, airing first on 26 March, 1990. This episode basically plays like a Star Trek escape room. Captain Picard is scanned by a floating, alien monolith and awakens in a four person cell.

Unfortunately, no one knows Picard is missing, because there is a duplicate aboard the Enterprise, who despite giving an odd order or two or three, seems to be the captain the crew knows, only more so (he finally asks Dr. Crusher (Gates McFadden) to dinner, and leads Ten Forward in a drinking song).

Back in the cell, Picard is trying to figure a way out, even as his captors are studying he and the others. Jean-Luc must puzzle out who can be trusted, who is an enemy, and do so before one of the fellow prisoners, who cannot eat the food left for them, starves or attacks and feeds on his fellow prisoners.

Moves, counter moves, revelations and traps all play out through the course of the episode both in the cell and on the Enterprise.

Once the truth is out, and Picard is returned to the Enterprise, he springs a trap of his own on his captors.

This is a fun episode, and seeing Stewart play Picard in a couple of different ways makes for entertaining viewing. The third season really has it going on. What a great series it became!

The Human Adventure continues Thursday…

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