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Old March 29 2013, 06:35 PM   #11
inflatabledalek
Captain
 
Re: Episode of the Week: 2x09 "The Measure Of A Man"

One extra thing I like about this one, presumably because of the author's background, the legal stuff feels much more solid than in just about any other Star Trek court episode. I've no idea if it follows real world logic, but it all seems to make sense in the context of the fiction in a way few of the other similar episodes manage, the only real conceit you need to make is that deciding on a definition of sentient life would probably be such a big deal it would actually take months to come to court and involve a lot more people than seen here. But the episode is good enough and it benefits enough from putting Picard and Riker against each other (and even if the haste is pushing it the reason for them being defence and prosecution feels sound) to make it easy to ignore.

The only real niggle, and it's a tiny one, is that Picard really should have made more of the fact that once Star Fleet accepted Data for entry into the academy they effectively acknowledged his sentience unless they give commissions to rocks as a matter of course (though that could explain things about a few of the regulars across the various series. ZING). It's something the prosecution might have been able to refute, but it's a surprise it didn't at least warrant a mention.

Though if I were being really, really, really needlessly bastardly picky I'd say the actor playing Maddox is a bit too young to have assessed Data at the academy, unless he was a proto-Wesley.

Other than that, extraordinary stuff.

As for the extended cut- They're all nice, competent scenes (with two exceptions...) but it's easy to see why they were cut as none of them really add anything that's desperately missed from the final edit.

The first of the two exceptions is Maddox crashing Data's party, a wise cut as it makes him a bit too much of a moustache twirling villain with his goading. He works much better as someone who isn't really evil (even if he is a bit smug), just lacking in the perspective on Data our regulars have gained.

The second is the extension to the final scene where Data's extra dialogue makes Riker seem a bit thick. Data explains why he doesn't have any resentment, Riker doesn't get it so Data has to explain it again using simpler words. Poor old Riker.
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