Star Trek: The Next Generation (1992) – Schisms, and True Q

Captain’s log: stardate 46154.2

Airing on 19 October, 1992, this one has always been a favourite, and is a bit creepy. Written by Brannon Braga from a story by Jean Louise Matthias and Ronald Wilkerson.

Riker (Jonathan Frakes) is suffering from insomnia, but he soon learns he is not the only one, and the crew of the Enterprise find themselves dealing with a terrifying mystery.

As Dr. Crusher (Gates McFadden) helps as best she can, Riker and others begin to have a sense of deja vu, as well as recognising pieces of medical equipment.  Soon using the holodeck to help them delve into the mystery, they discover a horrifying truth.

It seems members of the crew are being abducted and it seems that there is something strange going on in Cargo Bay 4.

Riker, Geordi (LeVar Burton) and Worf (Michael Dorn) all work as one to put the clues together, and recreate a medical centre they are being taken to and experimented on.

This episode feels very familiar to those people who are versed in the reports of alien abductions, and it is executed very well, and happily, lets the Enterprise crew put a stop to it.

The alien incursion is coming from a layer of subspace which Geordi is able to track thanks to Riker’s final abduction, and we get a look at the alien laboratory and the aliens themselves. And they are rather spooky looking.

Data (Brent Spiner) in the opening teaser subjects members of the crew to recitations of his poetry, including the famous Ode to Spot.

I quite like this one.

schisms-hd-331

Captain’s log: stardate 46192.3

Olivia d’Abo joined the Trek verse on 26 October, 1992, and we see the return of Q (John de Lancie) in this story by Rene Echevarria from an idea by Matthew Corey.

Amanda Rogers (d’Abo) is an honour student who has won a tour on the Enterprise. Her presence then summons the omnipotent being Q when she begins to demonstrate some unusual abilities.

It actually handles the ideas of growing up and discovering oneself in a good way. Sure, Q is occasionally funny, but when he presents himself he wants to serve as teacher, and guide to Amanda. He believes that Amanda should go with him, to train and lean from the Q Continuum (or there is another option, just in case), but she isn’t sure what she wants to do with her life.

And there’s the fact that she has a bit of a crush on Riker.

Soon, she will be forced to make a decision about her life, even if it may mean never using her powers again.

I rather like Crusher in this episode, she supplies advice not only to a scientific peer, but also plays the maternal card as well.

Let’s just get this out of the way, if Q shows up, it’s pretty much guaranteed I will enjoy the episode, and to be completely honest, I’ve had a crush on both d’Abo sisters since I discovered them – Maryam in The Living Daylights in 1987 and Olivia in Conan The Destroyer in 1984. and through The Wonder Years.

The Human Adventure continues next week…

Amanda Rogers

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