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Star Trek The Next Generation - Season 2 (Slimline Edition) [DVD]
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The entire second series of the first 'Star Trek' spin-off. In 'The Child' Troi is impregnated by an unseen alien while sleeping and soon gives birth to a rapidly-ageing child. 'Where Silence Has Lease' sees the Enterprise trapped in a hole in space by an alien entity wishing to conduct experiments on it. 'Elementary, Dear Data' has Data and Geordi play at Holmes and Watson on the holodeck, but their holographic Moriarty assumes its own identity and threatens to take over the ship. 'The Outrageous Okona' finds the Enterprise playing host to the larger-than-life Captain Okona. 'Loud as a Whisper' sees Troi helping deaf mute mediator Riva to end an age-old galactic conflict when his three assistants, without whom he is unable to communicate, are killed. In 'The Schizoid Man' Data takes on characteristics of brilliant cyberneticist Dr Ira Graves after witnessing his death on an away mission. 'Unnatural Selection' has the Enterprise attempt to warn a genetic research station of the outbreak of a rapid ageing disease. 'A Matter of Honour' finds Riker forced to serve as first officer on a Klingon vessel as part of an exchange scheme. In 'The Measure of a Man' Riker is forced to prosecute Data in a court of law when the latter attempts to resign from Starfleet. 'The Dauphin' sees Wes Crusher get into trouble after falling in love with Salia, a young alien woman who is soon to become Dauphin and thus end civil war on her home planet. 'Contagion' has the Enterprise cross the Romulan Neutral Zone in order to aid the USS Yamato, whose computer systems have failed mysteriously. 'The Royale' finds Riker, Data and Worf exploring an apparently barren planet and discovering a casino. In 'Time Squared' Picard doubts the safety of the Enterprise when they pick up a Federation shuttle containing... Picard, sent back in time from six hours in the future to warn of a catastrophe that has yet to occur. 'The Icarus Factor' sees Riker shaken by a reunion with his father, whom he has not seen for fifteen years. 'Pen Pals' has Data reveal that he has broken the Prime Directive after befriending an alien girl. 'Q-Who?' finds the Enterprise transported to a far-flung Universe, where they encounter the relentless part-human cybernetic beings known as the Borg. 'Samaritan Snare' sees both Picard and Wesley travelling to starbase Scylla 515 - the former for cardiac surgery, the latter to sit his Starfleet exams. In 'Up the Long Ladder' the Enterprise crew are forced to mediate in a conflict between the Bringloidis, whose planet is on the verge of destruction, and the Marisposans, a clone race who wish to copy Riker and Pulaski's DNA. 'Manhunt' has Troi's mother Lwaxana arrive on the Enterprise and sets her sights on Picard, who seeks refuge in his holodeck Dixon Hill programme. 'The Emissary' finds Worf reunited with former lover K'Ehleyr when she arrives as ambassador to a shipful of Klingons who are not aware that the war with the Federation is over. In 'Peak Performance' Riker takes charge of an old Starfleet vessel, the Hathaway, in a war game against Picard and the Enterprise. Finally, in 'Shades of Gray', Riker has to fight for his life when his nervous system comes under attack from an alien organism.
To the delight of Star Trek fans everywhere, the stellar second season of The Next Generation (1988-89) belonged to Lieutenant Commander Data. As the Enterprise-D's resident android, Data (in the Emmy-worthy hands of Brent Spiner) would gain legal sentience in the season highlight "The Measure of a Man," and his increasingly "human" personality would refine itself in such diverse episodes as "Elementary, Dear Data" (Data as Sherlock Holmes), "The Outrageous Okona" (a misfire, but worthy from the Data perspective), and "Pen Pals." While Gates McFadden (Dr. Crusher) took a sabbatical of then-unknown duration (gracefully replaced by original Trek guest star Diana Muldaur as Dr. Pulaski), the remaining bridge crew would match Data's vitality: Riker grew a handsome beard and proved his command potential; Worf became richly nuanced in "The Icarus Factor," and met his match (and mate) in guest Suzie Plakson's fiercely Klingon sexpot K'Ehleyr; Wesley matured admirably, despite continuing fan disapproval; Betazed culture emerged as Troi locked horns with her eccentric mother, Lwaxana (Majel Barrett, in a recurring role); and La Forge made good on his promotion to chief engineer while Chief O'Brien (Colm Meaney) flawlessly rode on Geordi's coattails.
In a crucial series development, Guinan (special guest Whoopi Goldberg) revealed a connection to Q in her helpful capacity as Ten-Forward's enigmatic host, while Q himself (John DeLancie) precipitated the Enterprise's first, fateful encounter with the Borg (in the suspenseful "Q Who?"). Through it all, Patrick Stewart brilliantly intensified all of Picard's renaissance qualities (especially in the dazzling "Time Squared"), exploring the captain's facets with equal measures of curiosity, fascination, amusement, courage, and philosophical insight. Despite its lame finale with the money-saving clip-show "Shades of Gray," season 2 charted a warp-nine course to the even better season 3. --Jeff ShannonSee all Product Description
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The crew are now settling down into their roles and appear more comfortable as a result. Stories are better too. As Rick Berman says in the accompanying extra, `Mission Overview', "the show started to click". Unfortunately there was a writers' strike in Hollywood during this second season, and I understand this is why there are only twenty-two episodes. Indeed, the last episode is more or less a rifling-through of Riker's memories from previous episodes.
The best thing about TNG, for me, is Q. And here he returns to introduce the crew for the first time to their future adversary, the Borg. However, I had to wince when at the height of his first battle with the Borg, Picard decides to ... have a conference. What a difference from Kirk! Episode twelve for me replicates the final circumstances of Bowman towards the end of the film `2001: A Space Odyssey', caught in an alien power's concept of `Casino Royale'.
A wide variety of contemporary matters are addressed, from issues relating to abortion and an immaculate conception in episode one through to a definition of what constitutes life in episode three and the perils of genetic engineering in episode seven. But present-day scientific knowledge has already made the world of genetics depicted in episode eighteen obsolete.Read more ›
If you became (or are) a Data fan, then there are some important and interesting developments for Brent Spiner's character with his love of Sherlock Holmes stories providing a wonderful episode in "Elementary, Dear Data". Other episodes deal with his status as an artificial life form being called into question in the courtroom drama episode "The Measure of A Man" and the development towards a greater understanding for human behaviour in "Pen Pals". The introduction of the new Enterprise doctor, Katharine Pulaski, also generated character friction with Dr. Pulaski's prejudiced view of Data as no more than a machine.
For those who enjoy scenes between Q and Captain Picard there is the stand-out episode, "Q Who". It also offers a defining moment for the entire franchise with the introduction to one of the best villain species created, along with hints about the mysterious Guinan as hostess of the new Ten Forward recreation area.
Other episodes show emotional spark, drama and humour with the re-appearance of the irrepressible Lwaxana Troi (Manhunt) and the introduction of Worf's love interest, K'Ehleyr, along with some much needed character development which would have consequences through to Worf's life on Deep Space 9 (The Emissary).
For these high points of the series there are also low ones.Read more ›
You could forgive a few minor issues with scripting - there are also some great moments where you can see the characters being set on the path they will follow up to season 7. What is unforgiveable however, is the character of Pulaski. There's no real surprise that Gates Mcfadden was rushed back in for season 3. Pulaski is just unlikeable, yet it feels as though the writers are trying to forces us to love her. She's horrible to Data - even sarcastic (to the point where she scans him in an effort to ignore his request that she pronounce his name right), for no real reason other than she considers him inferior. Yet there are several moments where unknown characters gush over how renowned she is, how she's the only person they'd trust to do a certain type of surgery, how she wrote the book yada yada yada. Any time she was on screen, I wanted her off screen.
It all adds up to making this season one of TNG's weakest. But even a weak series of TNG is worth watching...
Most Recent Customer Reviews
These were bought as a present and I have had no complaints as to the condition or the actual series, I was happy with Amazon, my relative was happy with me so 5 Stars.Published 1 month ago by N F Beeden
The first season of "Star Trek: The Next Generation" was a complete mess. So the next season had to be much better, right?
Well, yes and no. Read more
great just what I was wanting don't need to wait for repeats on TV.Published 15 months ago by yorkie 1