The Trek BBS

The Trek BBS (http://www.trekbbs.com/index.php)
-   The Next Generation (http://www.trekbbs.com/forumdisplay.php?f=39)
-   -   Episode of the Week: 2x17 "Samaritan Snare" (http://www.trekbbs.com/showthread.php?t=213688)

Jeyl May 20 2013 12:02 PM

Episode of the Week: 2x17 "Samaritan Snare"
 
http://i1181.photobucket.com/albums/...ps6b87d79e.png
Memory Alpha Entry
Chrissie's Transcript
SFDebris' Review

Ah, Samaritan Snare. An episode that is broken, and that is NOT a deception.

It's funny how in the previous episode we had the Enterprise facing against an invincible and intimidating enemy called the Borg, to the laughable cartoony bad guys known as the Pakleds. Think cartoony is a bit of an overstatement? Their leader is played by the late Christopher Collins, an actor who is best known for voicing Cobra Commander and Starscream!

This episode also has the added benefit of reminding us that we're not yet in Season Three because Pulaski is still the ship's doctor and Picard is still a heartless jerk. Fitting since this episode establishes that Picard literally has no real heart. Despite that, the best parts of this episode all deal with Picard and Wesley taking a shuttle to a near by starbase to have his artificial heart replaced. It's the only time where Picard's smug attitude can be relatable (Alone with Wesley) and we learn a bit more about his character that we never would have assumed he was capable of doing. He picked a fight with a ruthless alien that almost resulted in his death. The moment where he mentions getting stabbed through his heart is made all the more strange by the fact that he says "I laughed out loud" after realizing what had just happened.... I'm not much of a Ron D. Moore fan, but when it came to the task of taking this very weird moment in Picard's life and making something out of it, I would not have come up with anything near the excellence to what Ron did.

As you can probably tell, the biggest problem with this episode are the Pakleds and how they are written. There is certainly an intent made to establish that the Pakleds are not as dumb as they look, but the end result feels like the writer simply forgot about the clever part and just embraced the idiocy of their dumb nature without changing the story. Our characters say in dialogue that the Pakleds managed to fool both the Romulans and Klingons to the point where they've managed to steal their technology and incorporated it into their own ship. But as we see later in the episode, the Pakleds are so stupid that they literally fall for a deception that was even more obvious than theirs. In the end, do the Pakleds really come off as a race capable of fooling both the Klingons and Romulans into stealing their technology and getting away with it? Nope. Not buying it.

Also, the surgeons working on replacing Picard's artificial heart?

Quote:

Surgeon: Don't worry about a thing, Captain. We've done this a hundred times, and we're ready when you are.

This will be a secondary cardiac procedure with mid-line entry and excision of the early model unit. I anticipate no complications, as the patient has had positive primary results and exhibits extraordinary physical condition. We'll all be home in time for dinner.
I know the episode is dumb, but this part makes me feel sorry for writer Robert L. McCullough. He writes a script featuring surgeons getting ready to replace Picard's artificial heart by making a fairly long confidence speech about it, yet the execution in the final episode completely botches it. The surgeons work in Picard's lower stomach area while the area of the chest where the heart is located isn't even under the futuristic surgery cover. At least the director of "Spock's Brain" knew where the brain was located on the human body. So when something does go wrong with the surgery that threatens Picard's life, I'm not thinking "Uh oh, something happened that they didn't anticipate", I'm bonking myself on the head because it's obvious the surgeon screwed it up because he didn't know where his freaking heart is!

So in the end, the Enterprise fools the Pakleds, rush Pulaski to the star base and Picard is saved much to his utter dismay.

CONCLUSION: While it's certainly a below average episode, I can actually see this episode being sort of a guilty pleasure for some. Despite how horribly written the Pakleds are, the actors playing them manage to make them enjoyable. The only thing that manages to make this episode important is the establishment of Picard's artificial heart and the mystery surrounding his "lol" moment. It also helps to serve how much Picard would later change as a character as the series progressed.

STINGER:
http://i1181.photobucket.com/albums/...sd713d34e.jpeg

Trek Survivor May 20 2013 01:35 PM

Re: Episode of the Week: 2x17 "Samaritan Snare"
 
Will always have a special place in my heart, despite being pretty poor.

When this episode was first broadcast in the UK - August 1991 - I was on holiday, and my dad had this policy of always unplugging the TV/video etc if we were away for more than a few days. In other words, I couldn't record it (used to record every episode). I did get to see it on TV though.

The following week was "Up the Long Ladder" and we were back from our holiday but off on a family day trip to the beach. I set the video, but managed to cock it up and missed "Up the Long Ladder" altogether.

I know now we can all say "well, you didn't miss much" but the 11-year-old me was very disappointed. It was a long wait till Christmas, but volume #22 of the CIC-released VHS series contained... "Samaritan Snare" and "Up the Long Ladder", and was on my Christmas list! And my folks got it, I was over the moon.

Um...(dusts off nostalgia) what was this thread about again? Ah, yes, "Samaritan Snare". It has several massive plot-holes (e.g. even if surgery is routine, why would you have it done in a facility where NO ONE is qualified to handle things if it goes wrong? Also, Deanna tells everyone "I sense deception; get Geordi back now"...and everyone just kind of ignores her.). Still, I kind of like the Pakleds. The lead Pakled was Chris Collins (back so soon after "A Matter of Honour") who also voiced Starscream in the original Transformers cartoon... so I can't be too bad at this episode :)

Jeyl May 20 2013 06:22 PM

Re: Episode of the Week: 2x17 "Samaritan Snare"
 
Quote:

Trek Survivor wrote: (Post 8122267)
The lead Pakled was Chris Collins (back so soon after "A Matter of Honour") who also voiced Starscream in the original Transformers cartoon... so I can't be too bad at this episode :)

Does anyone ever read what I type anymore?

:wah:

Spocktoberfest May 20 2013 07:03 PM

Re: Episode of the Week: 2x17 "Samaritan Snare"
 
I read it, but was briefly confused because he went by Chris Latta. He was great as those voices, I didn't even realize that was him.

I'd like to rewatch this now, with that in mind.

It always amazes me how faithfully they stick to that one fact of he "laughed" and they made a whole episode out of it! A good one, too! One of my favorites, actually. And this episode is foreshadowing? :confused:

jimbotron May 20 2013 08:27 PM

Re: Episode of the Week: 2x17 "Samaritan Snare"
 
Poor, poor Worf. He questions why they can't just give the equipment to the Pakleds, and after he gets shot down, he questions the logic of sending the chief engineer, and he gets shot down again. Turns out it was a trap, and the Pakleds know what they're doing. Riker is a suuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuucker. Why wasn't Troi on the bridge in the first place? She obviously would have been useful here.

I don't remember if Worf had the chance to gloat, but he should have pointed out that his caution was correct.

This episode is dumb, but not so bad because ultimately it set up Tapestry.

Timo May 20 2013 08:53 PM

Re: Episode of the Week: 2x17 "Samaritan Snare"
 
Quote:

It always amazes me how faithfully they stick to that one fact
...Indeed, so much good came from the early seasons being bold enough to establish strange and wonderful things, even if in offhand remarks. "Concepts" seem to disappear from TNG soon after the third season, the show then flying on fumes or extrapolations. The latter were invariably entertaining, the former just noxious.

Quote:

But as we see later in the episode, the Pakleds are so stupid that they literally fall for a deception that was even more obvious than theirs.
Which calls into question whether they ever did capture that alien hardware. Perhaps that, too, was part of their deception?

I mean, it's not that they'd be slow-witted or unintelligent, even in the endgame. What they suffer from is a complete and utter lack of understanding of weapons technology. They can't figure out what a crimson forcefield is or isn't, and they can't figure out whether they have photon torpedoes or not.

(I bet not. LaForge only fiddled with bridge consoles - that may work for turning wimpy tickler beams into mighty death rays, under certain circumstances, but it won't provide your ship with projectiles, warheads and launch tubes. We could assume this was a gamble that paid off: by pretending to install photon torpedoes, LaForge established that the Pakled, no matter how devious, didn't know anything about weaponry - hence the crimson forcefield ploy would succeed.)

For all we know, the Pakleds pilfered alien components that were easily obtainable due to being harmless, and patted themselves on the back for pulling a highly successful heist. Correct on the success, but only if you ignore the sad fact that the loot wasn't worth a penny.

Timo Saloniemi

JirinPanthosa May 21 2013 01:59 AM

Re: Episode of the Week: 2x17 "Samaritan Snare"
 
If I ever find a Pak'led halloween costume...

Samaritan Snare, like The Royale, is one of those episodes that's so stupid it's delightful.

Trek or Treat! May 21 2013 06:39 AM

Re: Episode of the Week: 2x17 "Samaritan Snare"
 
Quote:

Timo wrote: (Post 8124568)
I mean, it's not that they'd be slow-witted or unintelligent, even in the endgame. What they suffer from is a complete and utter lack of understanding of weapons technology. They can't figure out what a crimson forcefield is or isn't, and they can't figure out whether they have photon torpedoes or not.

(I bet not. LaForge only fiddled with bridge consoles - that may work for turning wimpy tickler beams into mighty death rays, under certain circumstances, but it won't provide your ship with projectiles, warheads and launch tubes. We could assume this was a gamble that paid off: by pretending to install photon torpedoes, LaForge established that the Pakled, no matter how devious, didn't know anything about weaponry - hence the crimson forcefield ploy would succeed.)

Then how do you explain this exchange?

Quote:

LAFORGE: Blowing that hydrogen exhaust through the Bussard collectors sure put on a nice light show.
RIKER: Harmless, but effective. Were you able disable the photons?
LAFORGE: Just in time. That's why you're still here.

Timo May 21 2013 11:01 AM

Re: Episode of the Week: 2x17 "Samaritan Snare"
 
Since it's so darn difficult to accept that LaForge could have installed photon torpedoes by fiddling with bridge consoles, I just invoke the "they were ignorant of weapons tech" argument: they already had photon torpedoes from the get-go and didn't know it. :devil:

Timo Saloniemi

Trek Survivor May 21 2013 01:34 PM

Re: Episode of the Week: 2x17 "Samaritan Snare"
 
Quote:

Jeyl wrote: (Post 8123707)
Quote:

Trek Survivor wrote: (Post 8122267)
The lead Pakled was Chris Collins (back so soon after "A Matter of Honour") who also voiced Starscream in the original Transformers cartoon... so I can't be too bad at this episode :)

Does anyone ever read what I type anymore?

:wah:

Um, yes. I repeated it as a reason why I LIKE the episode.

MikeS May 22 2013 02:35 PM

Re: Episode of the Week: 2x17 "Samaritan Snare"
 
Quote:

Trek Survivor wrote: (Post 8122267)
Will always have a special place in my heart, despite being pretty poor.

When this episode was first broadcast in the UK - August 1991 - I was on holiday, and my dad had this policy of always unplugging the TV/video etc if we were away for more than a few days. In other words, I couldn't record it (used to record every episode). I did get to see it on TV though.

The following week was "Up the Long Ladder" and we were back from our holiday but off on a family day trip to the beach. I set the video, but managed to cock it up and missed "Up the Long Ladder" altogether.

I know now we can all say "well, you didn't miss much" but the 11-year-old me was very disappointed. It was a long wait till Christmas, but volume #22 of the CIC-released VHS series contained... "Samaritan Snare" and "Up the Long Ladder", and was on my Christmas list! And my folks got it, I was over the moon.

Um...(dusts off nostalgia)...

I love the nostalgia! I have many memories similar to this from back in the day, what a happy childhood!

That's about all I have to say about this episode!

Kevman7987 June 3 2013 03:54 PM

Re: Episode of the Week: 2x17 "Samaritan Snare"
 
The episode is so bad, but every time someone says strong or smart in an odd way, me and my Dad will look at each other and say either, "We are strong" or "We are smart."

Gary7 June 4 2013 04:08 AM

Re: Episode of the Week: 2x17 "Samaritan Snare"
 
Quote:

Captrek wrote: (Post 8127337)
Then how do you explain this exchange?

Quote:

LAFORGE: Blowing that hydrogen exhaust through the Bussard collectors sure put on a nice light show.
RIKER: Harmless, but effective. Were you able disable the photons?
LAFORGE: Just in time. That's why you're still here.

I take it more like "tongue in cheek"... Basically you have this wimpy Pakled vessel up against a huge high tech starship. Equipping it with photon torpedoes seems utterly ridiculous, not to mention that Enterprise sensors would've easily detected the physical structures that are required for launching said weapon. As Timo stated, there's no way Geordi could have given them that tech just by making some modifications of their bridge electronics.

Timo June 6 2013 03:48 PM

Re: Episode of the Week: 2x17 "Samaritan Snare"
 
That's a nice save - especially when we take into account LaForge's oft-demonstrated perverse sense of humor. Although usually Riker doesn't play along with it...

Timo Saloniemi

Trek or Treat! June 6 2013 06:29 PM

Re: Episode of the Week: 2x17 "Samaritan Snare"
 
What's the point of the 24-second countdown and the "24th level of awareness"?


All times are GMT +1. The time now is 07:15 AM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.6
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
FireFox 2+ or Internet Explorer 7+ highly recommended.