Thursday, March 28, 2019


TNG Season 1 Episode 22
Air Date: April 18th, 1988


While watching some interesting solar flare activity, the Enterprise gets a distress call from a freighter whose engines are failing and they are falling into a planet's atmosphere. The Enterprise is unable to save the ship but were able to save 4 of the 6 on board. The reason they couldn't save them all is they sent their cargo over first.

The cargo was a medicine that one planet in the system needed and the other was the only one able to produce. The medicine is said to keep a plague from killing the population. It is very clear at the beginning that the medicine was actually a drug and the people were not infected with a plague, but rather were just addicted to the drug.

Doctor Crusher wanted to provide them with a replacement drug that would let them get over the effects, but Picard would not allow it as it breaks the prime directive. He does though also not provide them with the replacement parts for their remaining freighters which means eventually they will run out and lose their dependency.


The planet that provided the drug knew that it had that effect as they used it when they had the same plague and were able to wean off of it. But they exploited the other planet who were more advanced at the time, using the drug to trade for everything they needed. This is why Doctor Crusher was so insistent that they tell the ones addicted since it was more like exploitation. Picard has to explain to her why it is so important to follow the prime directive.

This episode had two actors that were in The Wrath of Khan. Judson Scott who played one of Khan's men and Merritt Butrick who had played Kirk's son David. He is one of the tragedies that came from the AIDS virus, eventually allowing toxoplasmosis to take his life before his 40th birthday.


"Beverly, the Prime Directive is not just a set of rules. It is a philosophy, and a very correct one. History has proved again and again that whenever mankind interferes with a less developed civilization, no matter how well-intentioned that interference may be, the results are invariably disastrous."

"Believe me, Beverly, there was only one decision." - Picard
"I just hope it was the right one." - Doctor Crusher
"And we may never know." - Picard

"Mr. La Forge, take us out of orbit." - Picard
"Destination, sir?" - La Forge
"I don't care. Let's just get some distance between us and this system." - Picard
"Aye, sir. Course 9-7-0 Mark 3-1-8, speed... warp 3." - La Forge
"Where will that take us, Mr. La Forge?" - Riker
"The Opperline system." - La Forge
"An interesting choice. Why?" - Riker
"Curiosity. We've never been there." - La Forge
"Engage." - Picard

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