Wednesday, April 17, 2019

Who Watches the Watchers

TNG Season 3 Episode 4:
Air Date: October 16th, 1989


The Enterprise responds to a distress signal from an observation station on the planet Mintaka III. The observation station is watching a primitive species of proto-Vulcans and their holoprojector is failing. It fails before the Enterprise can get there and the anthropologists are injured. One of the Mintakans sees this and as he runs in fear gets injured. Doctor Crusher decides to transport him to the Enterprise to be healed.

Here, the Mintakan named Liko sees the wonders of the Enterprise and learns of it's leader, Picard. Doctor Crusher tries to wipe his memory but to no avail. He starts telling his people about their God, The Picard. Riker and Troi beam down dressed as locals since they had captured one of the anthropologists. Riker is able to rescue him but Troi gets caught. They threaten to kill her so Picard transports the leader of the village up to the Enterprise to show her that technology is not the same as magic.


Sir Arthur C. Clark once said "Any significantly advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic". This was the tactic that Picard used to convince the Mintakans that he wasn't a God. Orinally he didn't even want to go this far as the Prime Directive doesn't allow for any contact but since the damage was done, he was willing to give his life to minimize the damage. In the end, Liko shoots an arrow at Picard thinking he was invulnerable, but when he sees Picard's red blood he realizes his mistake.


"It's worse than we suspected. The Mintakans are beginning to believe in a god. And the one they've chosen, is you." - Riker

"Dr. Barron, I cannot, I will not impose a set of commandments on these people. To do so violates the very essence of the Prime Directive." - Picard
"Like it or not, we have rekindled the Mintakans' belief in the Overseer." - Barron
"And are you saying that this belief will eventually become a religion?" - Riker
"It's inevitable. And without guidance, that religion could degenerate into inquisitions, holy wars, chaos." - Barron
"Horrifying." - Picard

"Get up. You must not kneel to me." - Picard
"You do not wish it?" - Nuria
"I do not deserve it." - Picard

"If you believe I am all-powerful, then you cannot hurt me. If, however, I am telling the truth, and I am mortal, you will kill me. But if the only proof you will believe is my death, then shoot." - Picard

No comments:

Post a Comment