I just can’t seem to stick to reviewing two episodes per month. Luckily I have a good excuse: we have a new son! Joshua was born August 24th, and now that we’re both getting a bit more sleep and I am more coherent, I’ve got my reviews done. This week it’s Tapestry and the first of a two-parter, Birthright.
Tapestry isn’t just one of the best episodes of season six, it isn’t just one of the best Q episodes, it’s one of the best episodes in the entire series. Upon Picard’s apparent death, Q welcomes him into the afterlife with open arms. In discussing his life, Q discovers one of Picard’s greatest regrets is his rash actions that led to him getting an artificial heart, and offers him a chance: if he can avoid getting stabbed, Q will let him live. Picard gets to live, but in a life he would never want.
Remember in my last post I said if Ron Moore said he would have done anything differently it would have been not writing Aquiel? Well, Ron Moore said of all the episodes he wrote this was his favorite. According to him, “I wanted Picard to look back and realize that things that you thought were like, these traumatic screw-ups in your life actually got you where you are now.” This is also one of only five episodes that does not have a stardate. If you’d like to know more, feel free to check out my full review.
Birthright, Part I is a step down, as most episodes would be. The Enterprise is docked at Deep Space 9 for a made up reason, just to set the episode at Deep Space 9. While there Worf is told by a mysterious alien that his father is still alive, at a Romulan POW camp. Worf doesn’t take kindly to this, but ends up paying an alien to take him there to investigate. Meanwhile, due to a convenient alien device, Data is shocked into having his first dream.
Evidently this was supposed to be a standalone episode about Worf and some Romulans, Bridge on the River Kwai style. The story was expanded to be a two-part episode but due to where they would break it they needed to fill some time in part one. Thus the whole idea of Data progressing as a sentient life form emerged. I’ll bet you didn’t know that it was supposed to be Jadzia Dax on the Enterprise with Data instead of Dr. Bashir! Read about her reaction a lot more in my full review.
I’ll do my best to get the next two episodes, Birthright Part II and Starship Mine, written as soon as possible. I’d love to finish season six by the end of the year–I guess we’ll have to wait and see. Here’s hoping.