FROM THE SFX ARCHIVES With Next Generation season one now out on Blu-ray, what better time to excavate this classic feature? Originally posted in 2010
The Reduced SFX Company presents Star Trek The Next Generation season one
Star Trek: The Next Generation – Season One(opens in new tab)
OVERALL SYNOPSIS OF SHOW
An ugly computer-generated spaceship run by a peacekeeping force called Starfleet flies around the galaxy trying desperately hard not to offend anybody or do anything even remotely un-politically correct. This is a metaphor for how America would like to see itself in the brave new world of 1987, but it is, sadly, complete codswallop.
A British man with a faintly Shakespearean timbre gives a POLITICALLY CORRECT MONOLOGUE .
VOICE: To boldly go where no man, woman, animal, vegetable, mineral, carbon-or-silicon-based life form has gone before!
This is deemed to be too long, and so the OPENING MONOLOGUE is changed to the still POLITICALLY CORRECT but shorter:
VOICE: To boldly go where no-one has gone before!
WILLIAM SHATNER: “No-one”? Jeez, you guys really need to take a chill pill. Wouldn’t have happened in my day...
TROI: I am Betazoid and can feel what you’re thinking.
She FEELS for a few moments.
TROI: I am saddened that you don’t like my legs, so I will wear a jumpsuit for the next seven years. One day I’ll lose the bun, too, but only because it’s pulling so tightly at my scalp that my nose is on my forehead.
TROI talks in a silly accent because she is an alien. Later appearances from American-sounding BETAZOIDS show that she’s really just being PRETENTIOUS .
COMMANDER WILLIAM T RIKER joins the ENTERPRISE after first encountering an ANDROID named DATA .
DATA: I want to be human. This will be my story arc for the entirety of this series.
RIKER: Why are you yellow?
DATA: My creator was a fan of The Simpsons.
DATA: No. I am experimenting with the human trait known as “humour”. How am I doing?
RIKER: ...Just don’t leave golden fingerprints everywhere.
The CAPTAIN of the USS ENTERPRISE is the owner of the MONOLOGUE VOICE . His name is the French-sounding JEAN-LUC PICARD , even though he is BRITISH but uses VILE AMERICANISMS like RE-ROWT instead of RE-ROUTE . This is CONFUSING , but we’ll learn to live with it.
RIKER: Engage what?
PICARD: The engines, Number One. Make it so!
RIKER: What kind of catchphrase is “make it so”? And I don’t really like being called “number one”. It’s a little too close to being a “number two”.
PICARD: Just move my bloody ship!
The SHIP moves. Also on board are a GROWLY KLINGON named WORF , a BLIND HELMSMAN named GEORDI LAFORGE , a RAVISHINGLY ATTRACTIVE red-headed DOCTOR and HER SON , WESLEY CRUSHER .
WESLEY: I just saved the ship! Go me!
THE WHOLE WORLD: We hate you!
WESLEY: You say that now . One day, however, I will be an adult and all geeks will worship me like a god.
THE WHOLE WORLD: It’s true, we love you, Wil Wheaton! But we really hate Wesley because he’s just Gene Roddenberry writing himself onto the ship and it sucks.
WESLEY: And I saved the ship again! Result!
PICARD: Whoever came up with the idea of having families on board my ship needs to be shot. Can you imagine Kirk putting up with this shit?(opens in new tab)
The USS ENTERPRISE encounters the much-heralded EVIL BAD GUYS of this new incarnation of STAR TREK .
THE FERENGI: We’re so evil! We’re the new Klingons!
PICARD: You look funny.
THE FERENGI: Fear us!
RIKER: Ha ha ha, aren’t they cute?
THE FERENGI: Honestly, we’re really scary!
WORF: Their ears are hilarious!
THE FERENGI: Okay, we give up. From now on we’re comic relief. You need a bigger bad guy.
The show DOESN’T GET ONE until the BORG show up, but that’s ages away. In the meantime, our HEROES battle with an OMNIPOTENT BEING called Q .
Q: I am more powerful than anyone else you will ever meet, and I have a great sideline in sarcasm and wisecrackery!
PICARD: Have you really got nothing better to do than pester us? You’re omnipotent! Go create a galaxy or something!
Q: But I’m here to put you on trial for the next seven years, even though you don’t know it. It’s down to you to prove that humanity is worth saving!
PICARD: Oh. No pressure then. Er... would you like a cup of Earl Grey?(opens in new tab)
The ship is infected with a virus in a story that is an HOMAGE to an ORIGINAL SERIES episode.
RIKER: Sir, is it really wise for us to be ripping off classic Trek when we’ve only been on air for five minutes?
PICARD: It’s okay because Data and Tasha Yar will have sex. It’s titillating.
DATA: [Drunkenly] I’m fully functional!
PICARD: ...Although possibly a little embarrassing, too.
RIKER: Let’s just move on and pretend this didn’t happen.
SECURITY CHIEF TASHA YAR stops shouting and looking tough just long enough to DIE .
TASHA: If you’re seeing this hologram, it’s because I died at the hands of a slime monster. I’ve only known you for a few short months and yet I have profound and insightful things to say to all of you.
The crew WEEP . NEW STAR TREK clearly isn’t afraid to SHOCK THE AUDIENCE and SHAKE THINGS UP.
DENISE CROSBY: Actually I just wanted to leave. It wasn’t a big plan or anything.
We STAND CORRECTED .(opens in new tab)
There is a new device on the USS ENTERPRISE called a HOLODECK . It creates a virtual world for people to explore and play in. Its other function appears to be to MALFUNCTION DANGEROUSLY , and yet people keep using it.
PICARD: This is the perfect place to set a noir episode!
RIKER: Sir, the Holodeck is malfunctioning and you’re in terrible danger!
PICARD: I am shocked at this unforeseen turn of events.
WESLEY: It’s okay, I think I can fix it.
PICARD: Good, because everybody needs to use this lethal device for their leisure activities or we will all go insane.
WESLEY: But it’ll probably break again.
PICARD: Yes, but we can dress up and swordfight and do lots of silly things. It’s essential for the well-being of this ship! Plus I never beam down to any planets because I’m too important to risk, so I need some form of getaway.
RIKER: Yes, you need to stay here so I can explore planets without you. And possibly have a wild romp with an alien woman or two because I am supposedly the new Kirk.
PICARD: But we’re politically correct now, and wild romps with alien women are irresponsible. You can’t do that.
RIKER: Damn. Somebody needs to invent a pleasure planet named Risa where all Starfleet crewmembers go for wild romps guilt-free.
TROI: Aren’t you secretly in love with me, Imzadi?
RIKER: Meh. I’m waiting for you to lose the bun.(opens in new tab)
There’s some sort of EVIL CONSPIRACY in STARFLEET . Then ROMULANS show up. It’s all very DARK and SINISTER .
PICARD: I know these storylines are trying really hard to be dark and sinister but I wish the Borg would hurry up. It’s all a bit dull, really.
GEORDI: I can’t believe nobody’s made fun of my VISOR yet. Isn’t anybody going to mention that it’s just a banana clip pinned to my head?
DATA: It has been mocked to death, Geordi. Old news.
DATA: On the other hand, meet my evil twin! That concept has not been mocked to death at all.
GEORDI: He’s much more interesting than you, isn’t he?
LORE: I can use contractions, too! Can’t I? It’s easy!
DATA: This is unfair. My creator made me yellow and stuffed up my language circuits. I would hate him but I have no emotions.
GEORDI: At least you’re fully functional.
SEASON ONE ENDS . In 16 episodes’ time we will finally MEET THE BORG .
PICARD: Hurrah! That’s when this show starts to kick arse… sorry, ass!
WESLEY: Oops, just saved the ship again.
PICARD: I wish I could kick your ass. Why can’t you be more like Wil?
Script by Jayne Nelson