Date: March 7, 2020
Season 1, Episode 23
Setting the Stage: I watched this episode via Netflix once everyone was home and before we had to go out to celebrate with some friends. Due to the nature of the last episode, I wanted to write about it separately. I’ll also be traveling tomorrow, by car, so I’m not sure if I’ll get to finish Season 1 today, Sunday, or Monday… you’ll just have to wait and see. I’m still writing to some Lord of the Rings music, because there were two trilogies worth of stuff and I’ll probably be done sometime around Season 3 of TNG 🙂
Bad Ass Moms has reached their first stretch goal and I hope some more of you decide this is worthy project to get even more cool things: http://kck.st/2SimbnD. There are only 4 days left and I totally want to see a hardcover happen!
Picard: Data, I want this to be an away team of one. You. I don’t think there’s any reason to risk anyone else.
Data: It is reasonable, sir. After all, I am a machine and dispensable.
Picard: Indispensable is the appropriate word. I think it should be only you because you seem more able to control the effects of the time distortion.
Data: Oh, I see, sir. That is quite true, sir. I see time as a constant, whereas humans perceive time as flexible. Hence the expression, time flies when you’re having fun, which until now has always confused me.
Picard: Well, I want you to put a stitch in time and, er, save much more than nine.
Data: Sir?Data being a little self-deprecating, Picard explaining his reasoning, and Data totally not getting “the joke”
The Enterprise is looking to start some shore leave and I’m already worried about this episode. Picard is fencing and all of a sudden there is a glitch in the Matrix, we’ve got a time loop! They intercept an automated distress call from a Dr. Manheim and Picard gets a little anxious and wistful. He orders the ship to the coordinates of the distress call and heads to the holodeck to “visit” a Parisian cafe. After they’ve arrived at the first set of coordinates there’s another set waiting for them, a lot of precautions for a guy who messes with linear time and has sent a distress signal. You’re either distressed and in need of assistance or not – can’t have it both ways home slice.
They make contact with two survivors, a woman and a man, and Picard simply identifies himself as “the captain” rather than by his name. They are beamed directly to sickbay and, oh no, there’s a blonde from Picard’s past. We had almost made it through a whole season without a Kirk moment. Jenice, who is now married to Manheim, wanted a life with Picard before he entered Starfleet – but he was scared and never met her at the cafe in Paris. I love the banter between the two of them when he’s all trying to be honest and she wants him to lie… it’s super adorable.
There are a whole lot of really confusing time distortions and they are happening hundreds of light years away, probably causing a ton of confusion elsewhere in the galaxy as well. Manheim wakes up and everyone agrees that the experiment needs to be shut down, even if there are other dimensions to explore. Picard chooses Data for the away team as he can handle the time distortions best, and that’s a good call because he gets attacked by lasers (again) and two other Datas appear in time. He patches the hole, the doctor is saved, and Picard gets to have a proper goodbye with Jenice. Oh and the rest of the crew gets to go have their shore leave now.
I am shocked that there is no mention of Yar, no sadness by the crew, no indication at all the they had lost a vital crew member in the last episode. That aside, I think this is a really interesting episode about time without diving into time travel so to speak. The most interesting part of the episode, however, is the old romance between Picard and Jenice. This is a problem for a science-fiction show when the long-ago romance outshines the could-have-been-cool science problem. I wanted to like this episode more, but it just didn’t have anything that could push it over the “meh” hump. I rate this 5 wheat leaf pennies.