Monday, April 22, 2019

Hollow Pursuits

TNG Season 3 Episode 21
Air Date: April 30th, 1990


Lt. Barclay has a holodeck addiction problem and it is interfering with his work. It drives Lt. Cmdr La Forge crazy. Picard insists that instead of passing him off to another ship as was obvious happened with them, that La Forge should befriend Barclay. Reluctantly La Forge agrees.

Meanwhile, the ship starts experiencing random ship malfunctions. When the ship's antimatter injectors lock up causing the ship to accelerate beyond the safe speeds. Barclay realizes that all the affected systems had come into contact with just a few people that were in a cargo bay when a canister broke. They figure out what substance could be in the container that can cause the issue and narrow it to one. They are able to avert disaster and Barclay proves himself.


While the main danger of the episode was around the malfunctions, the real plot was regarding Barclay and his holo addiction. Barclay would recreate crew members of the Enterprise on the holodeck and play the role of hero. In real life, Barclay suffers from a lack of confidence that results in stuttering and self doubt. But once in the holodeck, he acts as a different person, almost arrogant.

Eventually the crew finds out what Barclay and object to it. While in the end Barclay does gain some confidence and deletes all his holo adventures but one, he still suffers from anxiety but with a crew that supports him, he is more willing to take on the challenge.


"Pardon me, but why is Lieutenant Barclay being referred to clandestinely as a vegetable?" - Data

"Good. I look forward to your report, Mr. Broccoli." - Picard

"I am the goddess of Empathy. Cast off your inhibitions and embrace love, truth, joy." - Troi (Hologram)

"Glad you were with us out here in the real world today, Mr. Barclay." - La Forge

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