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TNG 1-21

TNG 1x21
"The Arsenal of Freedom"

Original airdate: 4/11/1988
Rewatch date: 8/2/2011


While investigating the disappearance of the USS Drake at a planet known for selling deadly munitions, the Enterprise and its crew are attacked by an automated weapons demonstration.

Spoiler-free notes:

I love the advertisement when they arrive.

"Who sent you?" "Your mother." That's not something I ever expected to hear in Star Trek.

I don't understand why Picard beams down, even under Troi's protest. He knows the planet surface to be dangerous and that Riker has already been attacked. When he goes down, he is potentially putting the three top bridge officers (himself, Riker, and Data) in danger. That's an incredibly bad decision, and it leads to all sorts of predictable problems later on.

The attacking robot weapons look really cheesy.

Chief Engineer Logan? How many "Chief" Engineers do they have?!

When Logan tells La Forge he can't fight what he can't see, is he just being obtuse or did he genuinely not realize that Geordi is friggin blind?!

The writers missed a golden opportunity to develop the relationship between Picard and Crusher here.



Spoiler section:

This is the first time we get confirmation that Riker could, if he wanted, take his own command, but that he chose to be first officer of the Enterprise instead. I'm glad they wrote this into his character, because it is one of his defining traits throughout the series.

Those robot weapons adapt to the away team's attacks. This idea is obviously a precursor to the Borg.

This episode explains why we don't see La Forge in charge of the ship ever again.





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