TNG: “Up the Long Ladder”

Date: March 24, 2020

Season 2, Episode 18

Setting the Stage: Time means nothing because I don’t remember when I watched this episode. My Netflix account viewing activity says I watched this yesterday, but it seems so much longer than that. Professor Zoom was super needy today and had to join in on some of my conference calls. There rest of the week will be busier than today, sigh. I was trying to write this post much earlier in the evening, but I had to get together some items to donate to our school’s food pantry as they are opening for those in need. I got distracted by capers, it’s a long story, and now it’s already 11:00 pm, double sigh. Tonight I am writing to the sounds of Vivaldi’s Four Seasons.

I’d like to plug an upcoming virtual improv show by at least two of my high school classmates who are HYSTERICAL. Their troop is called “Death by Improve” and the link to their Social Distance Showcase is here.

Favorite Quotes:

Worf: I am fine.

Pulaski: You’re not fine. You fainted.

Worf: I did not faint. Klingons do not faint.

Pulaski: Excuse me, I’ll rephrase. This Klingon suffered a dramatic drop in blood pressure, his blood glucose level dropped, there was deficient blood flow resulting from circulatory failure. In other words, he curled up his toes and laid unconscious on the floor.

Worf: Doctor, there is no need to insult me.

Pulaski: Worf, I am worried. Now, something is wrong. Klingons don’t faint. Forgive me. I just can’t think of another word that applies. You’re sick.

Pulaski and Worf arguing over the usage of the word “faint”.
Worf and Pulaski share Klingon tea
So maybe Pulaski isn’t the worst…

Worf: You must not drink the tea. It is deadly to humans.

Pulaski: And none too good for Klingons.

Worf: It is a test of bravery, of one’s ability to look at the face of mortality. It is also a reminder that death is an experience best shared, like the tea.

Pulaski: Worf, you’re a romantic.

Worf: It is among the Klingons that love poetry achieves its fullest flower.

Worf is SUCH a sweet talker.

This episode starts with two strange things: one is an outdated Terran distress signal and the other is Worf fainting on the bridge. Turns out Worf has some Klingon version of the measles but Pulaski fibs to Picard to keep Worf’s honor, so they share some deadly tea and Pulaski lives life on the wild side by giving herself the antidote first. After this brief exchange where I start to think that Pulaski is not the McCoy-incarnate, Worf being sick is never again mentioned and not at all a later plot point.

a baby goat, super adorable
Baby gooooooooat!

Back to our mystery distress call. Riker beams back up from the planet with survivors of a colony that have a heavy Irish accent, a very 20th century way of life, and live animals – oh my! The leader of the crew tries to marry his daughter off to Picard, but it’s Riker that falls in love with her – there’s even soft music and everything. She comes on pretty hard and they kiss and likely do a lot of other naughty things off screen.

four clone troopers from star wars attack of the clones animated series
I will never not make a Star Wars reference

The Enterprise arrives at the other planet where the other colony landed. Riker, Worf, and Pulaski beam down and meet with Prime Minister and it’s a very different type of society, where everyone seems to look like everyone else – oh, they’re clones! They have an issue with replicative fading or some such and need to expand the gene pool. I think the answer is obvious, take the farm folks and plop them on the planet and you’ve got a done deal. Unfortunately Riker and Pulaski get kidnapped, but La Forge is on the case and they soon realize they were roofied for parts, gross. Pulaski makes a side remark about needing breeding stock and WHY DID THEY TAKE SO LONG TO GET TO THIS DECISION?!?! Each woman has to have at least 3 children by 3 different men in order to expand the gene pool, which the father is all excited about. At first the daughter is up in arms but then she kind of salivates at the thought of shacking up with the Prime Minister and having two other husbands… giggidy.

Dolly the cloned sheep
Dolly the cloned sheep is important for several reasons.
1. This line “Picard: Damn it, who’s out there? Riker: Lost sheep. Picard: Let’s go see if we can find them. / which is HYSTERICAL when they beam aboard livestock and one is a SHEEP.
2. Because of the livestock, I mean Picard was SCANDALIZED by the livestock on his ship. Just beside himself.
3. I had a third reason but can’t remember now. Oh well.

Okay so I have a few problems with this episode. What was the point of Worf being sick? Just so he and Pulaski could have a touching moment? Ugh. I do like that Pulaski shows off her “balls of steel” but it seemed like filler to me and didn’t quite have a place. Why don’t any of the men realize that they only have a choice of TWO women. Remember there were three men and two women that survived and became clones. I mean sure you’ll get one woman twice but she’ll be different, but not really, and now my head hurts. Cloning is almost as bad as time travel, but with a more complicated set of ethics.

I really liked the daughter, Brenna, as she knew what she wanted and wasn’t afraid to voice her opinion. What I don’t like is that her father is treated to every damn Irish stereotype in the book and it makes him look like a terrible leader. They had a thriving colony without much technology, so there’s that, though I’m sure Brenna did a lot of the heavy mind work. I also really enjoyed the well timed and abundance of humor in this episode. I had a hearty laugh which was so needed at the time. For that, this episode gets a 4 hour walk in the sunshine.

TA Out!

Published by njdevil12

I'm just a big city girl living in a not so big city with my fur children and partner.

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