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Old January 24 2009, 12:39 AM   #1
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The Wounded

Plot Summary: While on a scientific mission near Cardassian space, the Enterprise is attacked by a Cardassian vessel whose captain tells Picard that he presumed a state of war with the Federation after a Starfleet vessel destroyed a Cardassian science outpost. Starfleet orders Picard to maintain the peace at all costs, even if it means pursuing and attacking the starship Phoenix, which is under the command of O'Brien's former captain, Ben Maxwell. Picard invites the Cardassian captain, Gul Macet, to come on board with his aides so that they can aid the Enterprise's search for the Phoenix. O'Brien tells Picard that Maxwell lost his wife and children to a Cardassian attack, but he doesn't believe Maxwell would attack blameless Cardassians as an act of vengeance. When the Enterprise locates the Phoenix, Picard and Macet are both horrified to witness it destroy a Cardassian cargo ship, then the warship to whom Picard reluctantly gives the Phoenix's codes. The Enterprise hails the Phoenix and beams aboard Maxwell, who explains his actions by claiming that the Cardassians are arming for war, but Starfleet bureaucracy refuses to deal with the threat. Picard tells Maxwell that he must follow the Enterprise to a starbase to face a possible court-martial for his actions. Soon after Maxwell is returned to the Phoenix, his ship changes course to pursue another Cardassian cargo ship, insisting that if Picard boards the ship, he will see that it is carrying weapons. When Macet insists that this is a lie, and Picard threatens to fire on the Phoenix if Maxwell does not back down, O'Brien is able to convince his former captain to turn himself in. With Maxwell in custody, Picard tells a departing Macet that based on its location and shielding, he knew there were indeed weapons on the cargo ship, but he was determined to keep the peace; however, now Starfleet will know as well, and will prepare accordingly.


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Old January 24 2009, 02:56 AM   #2
diankra
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Re: The Wounded

A minor - and tangential - correction to a good review of one of those episodes which is far, far better on reviewing than you realized at the time, if you're ever given reason to rewatch it (by coincidence, I'd been reminded of it earlier today, as the song that Maxwell and O'Brien sing was used in a radio adaptation of A Prayer for Owen Meaney I was listening to).

Re: the reference to the earlier episode The High Ground: As far as I know, it was never banned in Ireland, but it was omitted from BBC runs until about a year ago (that's the main British network that was running TNG first time round, but not all British runs, as it was shown on the satellite channel Sky1, and released on video).
The background is that, as of 1990, the UK government had brought in a law banning broadcasts 'that promoted terrorism', which was meant to stop IRA spokemen broadcasting - the news programmes got round this by interviewing them and then getting an actor to redub what they'd said and broadcasting the interview with the over-dubbed voice, which due to a loophole in the law, wasn't banned. (I know that makes little sense, but none of this did, even at the time).
So, the BBC played legal tricks like that to get round the ban in news coverage, but still dropped that TNG episode, presumably because it didn't reckon a passing reference in an imported SF series was worth the trouble it might possibly cause.
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Last edited by diankra; January 24 2009 at 04:32 AM.
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Old January 24 2009, 09:46 AM   #3
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Re: The Wounded

I liked this. Really glad they improved the Cardassian uniforms in the next episodes.

Last edited by Dream; January 24 2009 at 12:06 PM.
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Old January 24 2009, 09:51 AM   #4
Norrin Radd
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Re: The Wounded

I LOVE this episode. An underrated gem. Things to note:

1. The introduction of the Cardassians. Who knew that this species would become a key element to much of the Star Trek saga, which of course led to the introduction of the Bajorans, and the rest is history. I found it refreshing to meet a species that was not yet another "huge" threat to the Federation, but was a thorn in its side nonetheless. It just makes the Star Trek universe seem more realistically diverse. Let's face it, they seemed somewhat technologically inferior, seeing as how a lone virtually defenseless Nebula-class starship was kicking Galor-class ass left, right, and center. Plus, you have Mark Alaimo as a proto-Gul Dukat, one of the finest Trek villains EVER.

2. Finally a great character episode for Miles O'Brien, plus some nice Keiko moments. It's great seeing indepth scenes with married couples together on the Enterprise. There's supposed to be all these families onboard, but we never got to see enough of that.

3. The episode is a thoughtful commentary on what war can do to people, even a decorated, veteran starship captain. The touching "Minstrel Boy" scene is a classic. You can imagine Captain Maxwell as having once been a heroic figure like Kirk or Picard, but for whom things just went REALLY badly: "I'm not going to win this one, am I chief?" "No, sir".

4. Picard vs. Gul Macet. I loved the political intrigue, something that up till now had been lacking somewhat in TNG.

"Take this message to your leaders, Gul Macet...we'll be watching."

Utterly badass.
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Old January 24 2009, 01:42 PM   #5
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Re: The Wounded

Always been a favourite of mine, one of Star Trek's finest moments.
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Old January 24 2009, 03:20 PM   #6
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Re: The Wounded

One of TNG's finest.
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Old January 24 2009, 04:46 PM   #7
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Re: The Wounded

Saw this a few weeks ago on Virgin One afternoon TNG reruns. It's a real cracker of an episode.

On a side note, I wasn't aware that the BBC have ever shown The High Ground. It was banned by the BBC all through the 90's, and as far as I know, the BBC haven't had the rights to show any TNG other than seasons 6 and 7 for a number of years. They occasionally stick a double bill on about 1am on a Friday night/Sat morning.

Gone are the good old days of BBC2 on a Wednesday evening at 6pm. But to be honest, the copies of TNG which the BBC have are such poor quality, I'd rather watch them on DVD.
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Old January 24 2009, 11:09 PM   #8
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Re: The Wounded

A wonderful episode that will always be a Trek favorite of mine. Expanding on Miles's character in preparation for DS9 was done excedingly well. The final scene with him and Maxwell is so genuinely emotional. Their touching rendition of "The Minstril Boy" was so moving that it brings a tear to my eye everytime I hear that song. I wish we knew more about those days. DS9, a terrific show, should've brought out more about the Fed/Cardy war, especially for Miles.
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Old January 25 2009, 05:24 AM   #9
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Re: The Wounded

I absolutely ADORE this episode for doing something that you only occasionally see in the Trek series: creating a TRULY, TRULY diverse alien race right from the get-go. Of all the foes created for the series TNG and later, only the Cardassians reached the depth and diversity of friendly races like humans and Bajorans.

As I've said in numerous other threads...it's not JUST Macet who contributes to this. It's the entire triad. Macet, for his part, reads like a more levelheaded version of Dukat--I know the episode review refers to him as being untrustworthy (and I am probably biased between the DS9-R's take on him, plus my own work on the character in Sigils and Unions), but he struck me as someone stuck between a rock and a hard place: wanting peace but also being required out of duty to keep the Federation from stumbling onto a rearming effort that he may not have agreed with. Later "political players" like Legate Turrel I think would be based on Macet.

There's Telle, that I think became the Cardassian stereotype: arrogant, duplicitous (though thuggish in his particular case), xenophobic, and I kind of suspect able to commit acts of brutality without the blink of an eye.

And then there's Daro. MAN...talk about underappreciated character right there. For someone who had just a few lines compared to Macet, he was the one that just blew me away. Quieter, thoughtful, and, it seems, deeply haunted by the past, though Daro seems more withdrawn, he reminds me of Japanese WWII pilot Saburo Sakai in that while he believed very strongly in doing his duty, he doesn't feel good about the things he got involved in (and probably not the leadership that ordered them, either). I really felt like he was sincere in wanting to befriend O'Brien, and man...I had this sense he was right on the verge of saying something that could've been HUGE in terms of helping both men find peace. And when O'Brien cut him off and stormed out--I just think that was an awful loss for them both.

Very strange how a scene can be played that low-key and yet feel so powerful. I'd say Time Winters (who played Daro) is an overlooked star in this episode.

This episode made a huge impression on me from the start. I only saw it once, probably back in the mid-90s...yet 6 or so years later, when I got the soundtrack to the movie Black Hawk Down, I heard this song. I didn't know the name of it at the time, and I'd never heard it with anything beside the melody. Only once had I heard it, but because this episode had burned such an impression into my mind, I knew it IMMEDIATELY and could hum right along. It was "The Minstrel Boy," of course.

I don't think I've EVER had such instant recall of a song heard only once, after such a long period of time--or the feelings that went with it.

Incredible episode. I had better shut up before I write a novel based on it.

Oh wait...I already am.
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Old January 25 2009, 05:31 AM   #10
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Re: The Wounded

Eps like this are one reason I'm glad TNG didn't get canceled earlier. S3 and S4 contain some of the best eps in the series, IMO.
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Old January 26 2009, 01:04 AM   #11
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Re: The Wounded

diankra wrote: View Post
So, the BBC played legal tricks like that to get round the ban in news coverage, but still dropped that TNG episode, presumably because it didn't reckon a passing reference in an imported SF series was worth the trouble it might possibly cause.
I agree with you that it was banned in the UK too, not just Ireland. And as you gussed, it wasn't a legal necessity to not show it but a political one. They didn't want to show an episode about such a hot topic.

Sky One meanwhile wanted to be more edgy and showed it, but cut out the line about the IRA.
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Old January 26 2009, 08:22 AM   #12
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Re: The Wounded

Nerys Ghemor wrote: View Post
This episode made a huge impression on me from the start. I only saw it once, probably back in the mid-90s...yet 6 or so years later, when I got the soundtrack to the movie Black Hawk Down, I heard this song. I didn't know the name of it at the time, and I'd never heard it with anything beside the melody. Only once had I heard it, but because this episode had burned such an impression into my mind, I knew it IMMEDIATELY and could hum right along. It was "The Minstrel Boy," of course.

I don't think I've EVER had such instant recall of a song heard only once, after such a long period of time--or the feelings that went with it.
The Minstrel boy sort of became an attribute of the O'Brien character. If you listen closely in the montage at the end of DS9's WYLB you can hear it being played.
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Old January 26 2009, 05:24 PM   #13
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Re: The Wounded

IMO, one of the finest hours of Trek ever. Great story, about what war and conflict do to people, and great acting. The final scene between Broadway vets Gunton and Meany is incredible. When Maxwell's voice breaks as he indirectly mentions his children, you just get chills. I'm getting choked up now just thinking about it. And the reviewers referral to the current conflict in Gaza - almost scary the parallels, and heartbreaking to think how many people on both sides will end up as emotionally "Wounded" as Maxwell and O'brien - the uncounted casualties of war. And Stewart was great in the last scene with Macet - you can feel Picard's seething anger just beneath the surface. This is what Trek was always meant to be.
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Old January 26 2009, 08:25 PM   #14
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Re: The Wounded

For some reason I remember really not liking this episode when it first aired. Although since I've seen it a few more times my opinion did a 180.
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Old January 26 2009, 08:30 PM   #15
Nerys Ghemor
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Re: The Wounded

nx1701g wrote: View Post
Nerys Ghemor wrote: View Post
This episode made a huge impression on me from the start. I only saw it once, probably back in the mid-90s...yet 6 or so years later, when I got the soundtrack to the movie Black Hawk Down, I heard this song. I didn't know the name of it at the time, and I'd never heard it with anything beside the melody. Only once had I heard it, but because this episode had burned such an impression into my mind, I knew it IMMEDIATELY and could hum right along. It was "The Minstrel Boy," of course.

I don't think I've EVER had such instant recall of a song heard only once, after such a long period of time--or the feelings that went with it.
The Minstrel boy sort of became an attribute of the O'Brien character. If you listen closely in the montage at the end of DS9's WYLB you can hear it being played.
Yep, I noticed that once I had a chance to watch WYLB.

(Which I didn't get to see until last year when I bought the DVDs.)
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