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The Gene Roddenberry Project Kickstarter
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Free Enterprise Kickstarter
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Star Trek/Planet of the Apes Crossover
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Horse 1, Shatner 0
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Old August 1 2008, 10:42 PM   #1
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The Offspring

Plot Summary: On his return from a cybernetics conference discussing breakthroughs in transference technology, Data creates an android named Lal by transferring his own neural relays into the new positronic brain. He allows Lal to select an appearance and gender from projections on the holodeck and is able to give Lal a more realistic human visage than his own. But Lal has difficulty fitting in with children at school, who are alternately afraid of her and mocking, and Data decides that she may learn human social behavior better with Guinan mentoring her in Ten Forward. Picard is deeply concerned about the implications both of Data deciding to become a parent and of Starfleet learning that there is another sentient android on the Enterprise. When Starfleet's Admiral Haftel is briefed about the creation of Lal, he wants to transfer the new android to the Daystrom Institute where he believes a team of human scientists will do a better job of educating her. Data invokes his parental rights and Lal expresses the desire to remain on the Enterprise, but the admiral insists that working in a bar is no place for an android. Picard is prepared to fight for the rights he helped to outline along with Starfleet Judge Advocate General Philippa Louvois, but before any further decisions can be made, Lal suffers a system breakdown while explaining to Troi that she is experiencing the emotion of fear. Data and Haftel try to repair the malfunctions, but Lal's new feelings have overwhelmed her neural pathways and Data tells Lal that he is unable to stop the breakdown. Lal tells Data that she loves him, and that since he cannot share the feeling with her, she will feel it for both of them. She thanks him for her brief life and the things he taught her. Once his daughter has suffered complete system failure - the android equivalent of death - Data transfers her memories to his own brain so that he may continue to experience the ways she enriched his life.


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Old August 2 2008, 01:00 AM   #2
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Re: The Offspring

Ah yes, the first Trek episode I truly watched with attention. Afterwards I thought "hey, this isn't stuff for dweebs...this is actually intellectual and damn good". I was hooked ever after.
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Old August 2 2008, 03:45 AM   #3
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Re: The Offspring

you know, I think this is the only TNG episode I have never seen...
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Old August 2 2008, 04:00 AM   #4
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Re: The Offspring

I sometimes think this episode better deals with some of the questions regarding beings like Data, in terms of their relationships with other beings, than "Measure of a Man" did. Don't get me wrong, MOAM is a good ep too - but its entire story rests on Maddox challenging Data's sentience as a living being, and that question seems to have largely been answered to the satisfaction of everyone else. He's left challenging Data's sentience on a largely metaphysical level, not a rational one, and so it seems a foregone conclusion that Data was never in any real danger of being relegated to the status of property. Plus the show had to continue.
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Old August 2 2008, 06:55 AM   #5
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Re: The Offspring

I always tear up when Lal dies.
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Old August 2 2008, 10:29 AM   #6
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Re: The Offspring

Jack Bauer wrote: View Post
I always tear up when Lal dies.
yeah, me too. One of the best of TNG for sure, but I never watch it unless I'm doing a complete run through of the series.

Welcome back to MEG's reviews, btw. I, for one, was looking forward to it.
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Old August 3 2008, 12:20 AM   #7
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Re: The Offspring

Lal is just one of those dear, wonderful Trek characters that is still so memorable to this day.

"He is biting that female!"
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Old August 3 2008, 03:29 AM   #8
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Re: The Offspring

I'm glad the show didn't get canceled by S3. This was when TNG really got its legs and started to shine.
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Old August 4 2008, 06:30 AM   #9
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Re: The Offspring

Hardin wrote: View Post
Jack Bauer wrote: View Post
I always tear up when Lal dies.
yeah, me too. One of the best of TNG for sure, but I never watch it unless I'm doing a complete run through of the series.

Welcome back to MEG's reviews, btw. I, for one, was looking forward to it.
Yeah, me three. This was one of the best of Star Trek, TNG, and of television in general.
Good review by MEG too. Great even.

It seems to me that all those questions MEG asks could be answered most simply by treating Lal as a person and acting accordingly. Keep the intentions the same toward Lal as toward any child but only change the details where appropriate.
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Old August 17 2008, 11:25 PM   #10
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Re: The Offspring

I adore that episode. Has me laughing when Lal trys to drink and doesn't swallow. Also has me in sobs with Data's enthusiasm and confusion and when she dies oh gosh there were buckets of tears. I think Picards handling of the situation was sympathetic. And I loved Ryker's confusion when he met Lal on ten forward. Best line - Data to Ryker 'What are your intentions towards my daughter'.
Definatly one of my favourite episodes
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Old August 17 2008, 11:27 PM   #11
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Re: The Offspring

Augustus wrote: View Post
you know, I think this is the only TNG episode I have never seen...
You have to see it!
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