Star Trek – The Next Generation: 1×26 – The Neutral Zone
Well, there’s actually a lot to talk about in this episode. I mean, the episode itself is terrible. Apart from Data, the rest of the crews dismissive attitude toward discovering the twentieth century ship and survivors on board is just very out of character considering they’re supposed to be explorers.
But, as well as being the first appearance of the Romulans in this series, this is also the first time the Borg are mentioned. Not by name, but the manner in which the outposts have supposedly been scooped out of the ground reeks of Borg (a fact Date refers to in ‘Q-Who?’, the episode in which they first officially appear, although after that it’s never mentioned again). In any case, it seems like the Borg had already discovered the Federation before Q forces an encounter with them.
Also, it’s the first time the current year is ever stated in Star Trek, ‘2364′, which therefore forming the basis around which all the other continuity is based. I don’t think the year, or even the century, was ever definitely stated in TOS – it could have been anywhere between the 23rd and 28th centuries – and it wasn’t until the movies that we’re told it’s the 23rd.
One of the survivors uses a com-panel to contact Picard, who chastises him for it. When he asks why it doesn’t require a key, Picard just scoffs that humans now are able to control themselves and exercise. Again though, this is a ship with children and teenagers on board so it’s a wonder Picard isn’t getting prank calls every minute.
We also learn that television doesn’t survive as a form of entertainment much past the mid-21st century. Cat-gifs however are here to stay.
So, that was the first season of Star Trek: The Next Generation. As this is the fifitieth anniversary year I expect I’ll be watching a lot more Trek in the near future, but for now I’m going to take a break to conentrate on writing and other things for a little while.