Top 5 Star Trek: The Next Generation Episodes
Yes, female Trekkies exist. For the Star Wars fans that consider us mortal enemies, you guys and gals have to admit that phaser rifles and Bat’leths are some badass alternatives to lightsabers.
I’m personally more of a fan of The Next Generation over the Original series. It’s less corny (especially after the first season) and can get exceptionally deep and philosophical. I’m a huge TNG nerd. Convention-caliber nerd, if I had the money for cons.
Here’s my top 5 Star Trek: TNG episodes.
5. Chain of Command, Parts I and II
Reports of a massive biological weapon in Cardassian hands sends Captain Picard and a few members of his crew on a top-secret mission.
As the mission to infiltrate Cardassian territory and destroy the weapon goes horribly awry and Picard is taken prisoner, Captain Jellico, the new temporary captain, begins his mission on The Enterprise to do preventative war negotiations between the Federation and the Cardassian Union.
Tension among the crew mounts as Jellico rules The Enterprise with an iron first. A sadistic Cardassian leader tortures and tries to psychologically break the captive Picard. CoC is definitely one of the darker and more intense episodes in the entire series and touches on a lot of themes relevant to our own military in this day and age.
4. The Measure of a Man
Android Lieutenant Commander Data’s sentience and standing as a person with self-determination goes up on trial. If he loses, he could lose bodily integrity and the right to refuse to be experimented on.
Picard gives one of the best damn monologues during the defense hearings.
PICARD: What is he?
MADDOX: A machine.
PICARD: Are you sure?
PICARD: You see he has met two of your three criteria for sentience. What if he meets the third, consciousness, in even the slightest degree? What is he then? I don’t know! [turns to Riker] Do you? [turns to Judge] Do YOU? Well that’s the question you have to answer.
3. Time’s Arrow, part I and II
With the time travel throwback to the Orginal Series, Data finds himself trapped in the 19th century, after falling into a time portal in a cave on a seemingly routine mission.
Lit geeks rejoice as the clever and curious Mark Twain/Samuel Clemens plays a major role in the plot.
2. The Inner Light
A mysterious probe gets inside Picard’s mind, and he wakes to find himself living as another man on a relatively primitive planet with no space flight. It’s a character-building episode for the Captain and one of the series’ most emotional episodes. In 1993, “The Inner Light” won the Hugo Award for Best Dramatic Presentation.
It also has one of the most relaxing and catchy folk flute songs ever.
1. The Best of Both Worlds, Parts I and II
This is the episode that makes The Borg one of the top villains in the last century of science fiction. Part I begins with the attack of the Enterprise and abduction of Picard. The strategy of the hive-minded cyborgs is to assimilate the Captain into their collective and use his knowledge and tactical experience to outmaneuver the Federation.
As The Borg get dangerously close to Earth, The Federation prepares for war. Now promoted to Captain, Riker desperately tries to figure out how Picard would think, so he can outsmart The Borg. The Battle of Wolf 359 will go down in Star Trek history as the Borg’s Spartan Victory as the defense is obliterated with ease and thousands of Federation lives lost. As the monstrous Borg Cube heads towards Earth, The Enterprise appears to be humanity’s only hope.
On that note, First Contact was the best TNG movie, fo sho.