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Star Trek: The Next Generation – Justice

November 9, 2012

First aired November 9, 1987. Stardate 41255.6. The Enterprise is visiting the newly-discovered planet Rubicun III to see if it’s a good place for shore leave. (It is if you like sex, apparently. Tasha seems to think it’s a very nice planet.) The Enterprise is also having some weird sensor glitches. Another team is sent down to the planet, full of blond-haired, blue eyed people in excellent shape, known as the Edo. They run everywhere, have terrible ’80s hair, and wear almost nothing. Troi is uncomfortable with the hug she’s given. Worf is not. The Edo suggest sex, but Wesley can’t join them. He runs off with some other kids. Back on the ship, they’re still reading something they can’t see. It’s like whatever it is is neither in nor out of reality. Data hails it, and something appears. It sends out something, and Picard gets annoyed at how “everything has become a something or a whatever.”

Back on the planet, Wesley’s playing with the kids, and fumbles his way through the girl flirting with him. The Away Team discovers it can’t reach the ship. Tasha learns that there’s no crime on the planet, because there’s punishment zones set at random. No one breaks the law, because it risks death. Tasha and Worf are shocked. Seems like the kind of custom they should’ve asked about earlier, doesn’t it? Worf also immediately figures out that Wesley’s going to break a rule. Wesley proves Worf right by falling into some new plants, and Mediators appear to sentence Wesley to death. They’re finally able to talk to the ship, and Picard beams down. The Edo tell Picard to use his advanced technology to take Wesley away, and Picard refuses. He uses the opportunity to ask them about the ship around their planet, and the Edo say it’s god. He takes one of the Edo up to show her their god. The god tells them to return the Edo to the planet. Crusher’s scared for Wesley.

Data tells Picard about the ship. Later, Picard brings Data in for some advice on the Wesley situation. Data asks if he’d sacrifice one life for a thousand, and Picard refuses to let that sort of arithmetic make his decisions. He then tells Crusher he won’t allow the Edo to kill Wesley. Down on the planet, there’s debate about what to do, and Picard tells Wesley he’s not involved in the decision. Which is funny, what with Wesley being the one who’s going to be executed. The ship prevents them from beaming up, and Picard delivers a tiny speech that convinces the ship to let them beam up.

This is . . . not a good episode. At all. All the sensuality of the Edo comes across a little creepy. The plot is largely predictable. Wil Wheaton turns in a fairly weak performance. The speech Picard delivers to the Edo god is weak, and makes it all feel a little anticlimactic. However, there’s some great performances from Stewart, Spiner and McFadden. Gates McFadden really sells that she’s a mother scared for her son. The discussions between Picard and Data are also really good, and hint at the relationship they’ll have throughout the series.

Overall, I’d give this a 2/5.

3 Comments
  1. Creepy. Anticlimactic. Probably the perfect two words to describe the worst parts of this episode.

Trackbacks & Pingbacks

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