Tuesday, November 13, 2012

ST:TNG 3.01 Evolution ~ Star Trek: The Next Generation Re-Watch



Images Source: TrekCore

Star Trek: The Next Generation Re-Watch continues, and I am curious to see if I can spot the difference from Season 2 to Season 3, as we begin this third season with...

Evolution
Season 3, Episode 1

Story:
  • The Enterprise is escorting a professor to witness a unique and predictable astronomical phenomena and deliver and experiment which will achieve fame for the prof.  But, the entire computer systems on the ship become unpredictable when Wesley's nanite experiment gets out of hand.
What it's really about:
  • This one had the traditional season opener feels of a pretty big thing happening between cast members to let the audience know time has past, and in this case it's the return of Beverly to The Enterprise and the repeated mention of Wesley not having enough fun for being 17 as well as being super smart and such. I found there aren't to many visual cues (yet) to denote the transitions of the season other than the effects looks pretty freaking sweet and but a more reliable visual cue for season 3 is to look for Beverly's short bob cut!


Character Focus:
  • Wesley is clearly the focus here, as it's his experiment with the nanites that cause the problems with the ship, plus he's connects with Dr. Stubbs on being a 'child prodigy' and the challenge of living up to your own potential as well as an unexpected not super-smooth reconnection with his mom (at least, that's what they infer).
  • Beverly also returns to the series for Season 3 after her stint over at Starfleet medical although I didn't hear an explanation as to why she's back and Pulaski is gone, but it's clear they are starting off strong with tension and the challenge of Wesley 'growing up too fast', and her concern he's not having enough fun.
  • Guest on The Enterprise, Dr. Stubbs, is also a focus as it's his experiment they are setting to the astronomical event.  It's odd, because although they go with the Wunderkid angle with him and have him be akinned to Wesley, the character reads like a privlidged (aka rich) character who can do whatever he wants.  This isn't something we normally see with someone who is visiting, human and a part of the Federation. 
What I remembered about this episode:
  • This is an 'it's all Wesley's fault!' episode, of which there were surprizingly little amount in Season 2 but we did have 1.08 Justice in Season 1.
What I noticed now, that I didn't notice then:
  • To be honest, I didn't notice too much different this time round except mis-thinking from the title it was a different episode and not remembering the nanite one was also the wunderkind one (especially as the wunderkind one *really* feels like 1.06 Where No One Has Gone Before.  
  • I did really think Dr. Stubbs was one heck of a piece of work!  Mouthy, over-confident but hiding behind a thin veneer of falseness.  Almost creepy. 
What feels different now, than then:
  • It feels a bit odd to have both energies of feeling like Wesley isn't relaxing enough but then also falling asleep led to the whole problem that takes over the ship.  That feels a bit unfair. 
What remained the same:
  • I'm happy to have Beverly back, I did miss her in Season 2 but I also really came to enjoy Pulaski so I wonder if I'll miss her!  Too bad they can't have 2 doctors! 
  • It's weird to have Data serve as the translator for the nanites, but I have a feeling we've seen this before (and likely will again...).
What I see differently:
  • I think there might be a message in there about 'don't mess with evolution', but I wasn't really listening. I guess I know that lesson!
  • I had no sympathy for Dr. Stubbs, especially when he turns on the nanites and blasts them with gamma radiation!  I mean really, who does that?
  • Plus, where they heck is this room:


Great Quotes:
  • "I always get an A." - Wesley
  • "But sometimes, when you reach beneath a man's self-portrait - as you so eloquently put it - deep down inside, what you find... is nothing at all." - Dr. Stubbs
  • "Dr. Stubbs, your own actions have provided evidence to the contrary. When you destroyed the nanites in the core, they responded by interfering with our life support systems. It is difficult to accept these as random actions by machines with loose screws."- Data
Left off at:
They go with a real Brady Bunch ending this one, they not only communicate with the nanites through Data so be able to regain control of the ship and the nanites even help them repair the ship in time for Dr. Stubbs to do the experiment.  Even though the nanites have evolved past needing the help of The Enterprise, Data does find them a planet to live on.  Plus, Wesley brings a girl to Ten-Forward (although I don't think we ever see her again...). 


Images Source: TrekCore

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