Tuesday, September 03, 2013

ST:TNG 6.10 Chain of Command (Part I) ~ Star Trek: The Next Generation Re-Watch

With Picard on a secret mission The Enterprise in handed over to a captain who walks to the beat of a different drum in 6.10 Chain of Command (Part I).


Images Source: TrekCore

Star Trek: The Next Generation Re-Watch returns! I know it's been months and months since I've written, but that is because it's been months and months since I've had a chance to get back to The Enterprise. Let's see what the crew gets up to in ...

Chain of Command (Part I)
Season 6, Episode 10

Story:
  • Picard, Beverly and Worf train for a secret mission, The Enterprise changes hands to Captain Jellico whose first mission is to negotiate with The Cardassians who have had increased activities and look like they may begin an incursion.
    Character Focus:
    • Captain Picard, Beverly and Worf are definitely at one forefront here, as they spend a lot of the episode training for and then undertaking their secret mission.
    • Captain Jellico is introduced in this episode, and he demands the crew to adapt to his style and needs very quickly, for which they get a little prickly about.
    • We also see a bit of a backhanded reflection of Riker is this one, who previously has been offered commands and seen as very capable, but in this case Starfleet doesn't even offer him The Enterprise and Jellico isn't impressed with him at all.
    • We also see Troi pushed back a bit with Jellico not heeding to her recommendations, and he asks her to be more formal and wear standard uniform (side note: this isn't the first time we see this as there if a fake-future version of her that Riker sees in 4.08 Future Imprefect).
    • Also, The Cardassians play a huge role here as it suspected they are are using a biological weapon, and the secret mission is to go into Cardassian space and discover & destroy the weapon.


    Images Source: TrekCore

    What I remembered about this episode:
    • Although I recognized which episode this was right away I mostly remember what happens in Part II, so much so that I didn't realize it was a 2-parter.
    What I noticed now, that I didn't notice then:
    • It feels like this one is a "if The Federation went to war, we'd have to be this rigid" kind of vibe to it.
    • The episodes with the Cardassians in TNG are very interesting to re-watch, because you know so much more about them especially after DS9. It's weird to think when this episode originally aired we barely knew anything about them. They were introduced in 4.12 The Wounded, at which point there is an inkling that they might be up to no good but it's left open-ended.
    What feels different now, than then:
    • Beverly woos over a Ferengi for them to get transport! I totally forgot that, and it's a bit odd.
    • I actually feel a bit for Jellico, I know the situation is harsh and no one (save for Data) is receptive to him, but we do see through Troi that he isn't confident in what he's doing but he still knows how to do it.
    What remained the same:
    • It's a bit of a hard watch because everyone is uncomfortable all of the time. Picard can't tell Beverly and Word what they are all training for, no one wants Jellico there, everyone is worried yet what is to come is not clear.
    What I see differently:
    • It's pretty surprizing that folks are so resistant (and vocal) about Jellico's orders. Sure, it's a quick change of hands and we all love Picard but um, he is ... The Captain. For the moment.
    • I actually found the mind games that Jellico plays with the Cardassian Lemec to be quite entertaining and strategic. Making Lemec wait, acting irrationally towards him while he's aboard but then congenial when his aides arrive, it's all very fascinating. Too bad Lemec completely outplays him.
    Great Quotes:
    • "You're not afraid of bats, are you, Worf?" - Beverly
    • "I want this ship ready for action, and I don't have time to give Will Riker or anyone else a chance. And forgive me for being blunt, but the Enterprise is mine now." - Jellico
    • "The trouble with wolves is that... sometimes in the fight for dominance, one of them ends up dead." - Troi
    Left off at:
    It's a trap! There is no metagenic weapon, and The Cardassians created this elaborate plot specifically to capture Captain Picard. Although Picard, Beverly and Worf do figure out it is a trap, only Beverly and Worf escape leaving Picard in the hands of The Cardassians who say he will answer their questions, or die.


    Images Source: TrekCore

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