Star Trek – The Next Generation: 2×03 – Elementary, Dear Data

Memory Alpha

See, The Doctor in Doctor Who can easily travel through time and visit BBC costume drama sets whenever he wants.  Although time travel has been used quite often in Star Trek, it’s a little harder for them than wibbly-wobbly-timey-wimey, so when they want to do costume dramas, they usually go to the holodeck.

So yes, another holodeck episode like The Big Goodbye in season one, but I like this one a lot more.  I think that’s mainly because of Daniel Davis playing famous fictional evil genius Professor Moriarty.  Despite him being an evil genius, I actually do feel for him a bit as he starts to become aware and to realise he is a character written as a villain, but why can’t he be more?

This all came about because of Doctor Pulaski taunting Geordi and Data, claiming that Data couldn’t solve an original Holmes mystery because he’s just a machine (despite the fact we’ve seen him solve original problems before), prompting Geordi to tell the Holodeck to create an opponent capable of defeating Data (similar to how Moriarty was originally created, as Arthur Conan Doyle invented him to kill off Holmes as he was tired of the character).  So once again we see that video games in the future actually can kill you when they glitch, and the customer support is useless so it’s up to the users to fix the bugs themselves.

I’m sure it’s been mentioned a lot of times before, but it seems like with Pulaski and Data the writers were trying to recreate the dynamic between McCoy and Spock in the orginal series.  But it doesn’t work, as Spock was half-human and obviously understood McCoy’s ribbing enough that he could jab back, whereas Data doesn’t and so Pulaski just comes across as plain mean.

But you know, it’s to hard to think of new things to say about a show that’s nearly thirty years old.  Did anyone notice that the holographic paper didn’t disappear when Data left the holodeck with it?  Of course we all did.  It does raise some questions, like what happens if you eat food and drink on the holodeck, but you know I’m sure already knows the answer to that.  I’m just gonna sleep until the next episode.

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