Monday, January 14, 2013

ST:TNG 4.09 Final Mission ~ Star Trek: The Next Generation Re-Watch

It's time to get a little preemptively sentimental in 4.09 Finale Mission.

Images Source: TrekCore

Star Trek: The Next Generation Re-Watch continues with ...

Final Mission
Season 4, Episode 9

  • Picard gives Wesley the news that an opening has appeared for him at Starfleet Academy, but before heading there they will go together to mining colony to finalize some negotiations. Shortly after they head out via shuttle with one of the miners and crash land on a moon, but with The Enterprise responding to a distress call of a planet being plagued by radioactivity in their environment by an orbiting waste barge, they are left to fend for themselves.
What it's really about:
  • This is definitely a way for the audience to say goodbye to Wesley before he heads out to the Academy, as well as a way to recount the relationship that's developed between Picard and Wesley.
    Character Focus:
    • Wesley is the focus here, as it's a final hoorah before the academy, but also because he gets to be the hero too stepping up to the plate and taking care of and likely saving Picard.
    • Picard is also very important in this episode, not only for taking the initial lead after they crash land but also in his recounting of his relationship with Wesley and showing a seldom-seen sentimental side. He also gets to be a hero too as he is only hurt while trying to protect Wesley from the falling rocks after Captain Dirgo fires on the water source.
    • Riker also has some focus time, as he is in charge of The Enterprise while Picard is away and clearly decides he can't abandon helping the folks from Gamelan V who are experience the radiation issues from the orbiting waste barge..

    Images Source: TrekCore

    What I remembered about this episode:
    • It took me a while to place this one, but I remember it as the one where Wesley and Picard get stranded on the planet and the other captain hordes alcohol with no intent to share.
    What I noticed now, that I didn't notice then:
    • The title of 'Final Mission' is rather ominous, and I wonder if anyone knowing it would have thought there might have been some regular crew member fatalities. I guess it keeps you on your toes a little bit as the final-ness is rather that it's Wesley's last mission, at least that's what it felt like to me.
    • It was cool that they referred back to 2.17 Samaritan Snare where Wesley was mortified he would be going on a shuttle trip alone with Picard. It's amazing how far the series has come.
    What feels different now, than then:
    • Why is there a water source protected by the sentry? That's so bizarre. There aren't any lifeforms on the planet, nor any remains of such so what is it doing there? So strange.

    Images Source: TrekCore

    What remained the same:
    • It's a challenge to be stranded with folks that you don't have the same sensibility, power dynamics and struggles are sure to ensue. And they do.
    What I see differently:
    • There is lots of captain vs captain tension between Captain Picard and Captain Dirgo, and of course I'll always side with Picard but the other guy does have a right to state and act on his own volition. It doesn't turn out that well for him, but he does have that right.
    • There is an interesting point being brought up here on Research vs Risk, or Resources vs Risk might be more succinct. Dirgo's ship has no rations or emergancy supplies at all, and he isn't one to test theories but rather take action. this doesn't fare well for Dirgo, but it's also shows that basic survival skills are good for everyone, and definitely increase your chances in trying situations..
    • Good on Wesley for saving the day! Pretty crafty stuff and fast moves on the tricoder. Proof that research method and more controlled actions can be more successful. Although they do take longer.
    Great Quotes:
    • "All of the things that I've worked for - school, my science projects, getting into the Academy... I've done it all because I want you to be proud of me." - Wesley to Picard
    • "Oh, I envy you, Wesley Crusher... You're just at the beginning of the adventure." - Picard
    • "If there is one thing that I've learned from you, it's that you don't quit. And I'm not gonna quit now. I've seen you think yourself out of worse situations than this; and I'm gonna think us out of this." - Wesley
    Left off at:
    Wesley out-thinks the sentry guarding the water source and keeps Captain Picard alive long enough to be rescued by The Enterprise after Riker has dealt with the radioactive barge. Picard and Wesley share some tender moments of reflecting back to their time serving together, including Wesley admitting everything he's done has been to have Picard be proud of him and Picard saying it was selfish of him to ask Wesley on this mission but he wanted to to spend time with him before he headed off to Starfleet Academy. But, all's well that ends well and they get out of it alive and together.

    Images Source: TrekCore

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