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The Next Generation All Good Things come to an end...but not here.

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Old October 25 2013, 03:46 PM   #1
Romulan_spy
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"Hide and Q" is still an amazing episode!!

I just re-watched "Hide and Q" and I wanted to say that it is a fantastic TNG episode despite the fact that it looks a bit dated now of course. And, it is one of the most "trek" episodes in the way it uses science fiction to tackle issues of the human condition. Q is really just the vehicle to examine the concepts of how humans handle power and how gaining that power can carry with it a lot of baggage like arrogance and a superiority complex.

The moral of the episode is powerful that humans need to evolve at our own pace so that our emotional, spiritual progress matches our technological progress.

The whole scene where the crew reject Riker's "gifts" is a masterful scene. I especially love the slight look of pleasure on Picard's face because he is secretly pleased with how he has outsmarted Riker and Q. And when Riker says "I feel like such an idiot", I love Picard's quick stern "so you should!". Brilliant! The episode is really elevated by the great acting of both Patrick Stewart and John De Lancie. Q was at his best in this episode. He is devilish, mysterious, funny, and scary!

The episode also begs the question: is Q really just a "devil" trying to corrupt Riker or was he telling the truth that the Q admire humanity's thirst for knowledge? What were Q's true intentions?
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Old October 25 2013, 04:34 PM   #2
Jeyl
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Re: "Hide and Q" is still an amazing episode!!

Romulan_spy wrote:
The moral of the episode is powerful that humans need to evolve at our own pace so that our emotional, spiritual progress matches our technological progress.
What does that even mean? We have technology that creates food out of thin air and medical technology that can literally bring people back to life (which we have in today's world) AND erase selective bits of memory. When Riker wants to bring a girl back to life, everyone says no because... she needed to die?
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Old October 25 2013, 05:01 PM   #3
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Re: "Hide and Q" is still an amazing episode!!

The first thing Riker should have done was to use his new powers to take away Q's powers.
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Old October 25 2013, 05:06 PM   #4
sonak
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Re: "Hide and Q" is still an amazing episode!!

Jeyl wrote: View Post
Romulan_spy wrote:
The moral of the episode is powerful that humans need to evolve at our own pace so that our emotional, spiritual progress matches our technological progress.
What does that even mean? We have technology that creates food out of thin air and medical technology that can literally bring people back to life (which we have in today's world) AND erase selective bits of memory. When Riker wants to bring a girl back to life, everyone says no because... she needed to die?



pretty much sums it up. SFdebris has a terrific review of this episode, pointing out how stupid the moral is.

Why should Riker turn down the powers anyway? There's nothing inherently wrong with having powers or abilities, it's how you use them that counts. Picard and Riker both act like jerks in this episode.
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Old October 25 2013, 05:46 PM   #5
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Re: "Hide and Q" is still an amazing episode!!

I can't tell if Riker was being honorable or a stubborn schmuck who only kept his word because he was afraid Picard would say: "Toldja so." If I had to choose between my word and human life then I'm afraid my integrity would have to be seen as something of a wash.
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Old October 25 2013, 05:57 PM   #6
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Re: "Hide and Q" is still an amazing episode!!

I don't really get why Worf turns down his gift. At first I thought it was because the enterprise crew was pissed that Q had killed crewmembers in "Q Who" but then I realized, this episode came before that one. Also if I was Riker I would totally keep the powers. It'd be interesting if Frakes played a Q from this episode on.

But yeah, good episode, if only for seeing Wesley get stabbed.
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Old October 25 2013, 06:03 PM   #7
BillJ
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Re: "Hide and Q" is still an amazing episode!!

I like the episode a lot, though it doesn't handle the subject matter nearly as well as Where No Man Has Gone Before.

Where No Man... wrote:
DEHNER: Earth is really unimportant. Before long, we'll be where it would have taken mankind millions of years of learning to reach.
KIRK: What will Mitchell learn in getting there? Will he know what to do with his power? Will he acquire the wisdom?
DEHNER: Please go back while you still can.
KIRK: Did you hear him joke about compassion? Above all else, a god needs compassion. Mitchell! Elizabeth.
DEHNER: What do you know about gods?
KIRK: Then let's talk about humans, about our frailties. As powerful as he gets, he'll have all that inside him.
DEHNER: Go back.
KIRK: You were a psychiatrist once. You know the ugly, savage things we all keep buried, that none of us dare expose. But he'll dare. Who's to stop him? He doesn't need to care. Be a psychiatrist for one minute longer. What do you see happening to him? What's your prognosis, Doctor?
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Old October 25 2013, 06:03 PM   #8
JirinPanthosa
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Re: "Hide and Q" is still an amazing episode!!

There were certainly some problems with the episode but I don't disagree with its moral message, that hearkens back to Kirk's "I like my pain!"

There's one episode of Twilight Zone where a man makes a deal with the devil that he gets eternal life in exchange for his eternal soul. And this deal comes with an escape clause, he can choose to die whenever he wants. He thinks, he's gotten away with something, he'll never go to hell so long as he never chooses to die. But in the end the condition of knowing you'll never die made his life so meaningless to him that he did more and more extreme things to try to feel something. He ended up getting a life sentence and using his escape clause.

There's another Twilight Zone episode where a gambler arrives in what he believes to be heaven. He is told he can have whatever he wants, whenever he wants. So he starts winning every hand at poker, impressing every woman he meets, and so on. In the end he gets really bored with winning because he knows for a fact he's going to win, and finds out that he's actually in hell, and his hell is getting whatever he wants whenever he wants it with no chance of failure.

Those two episodes sum up the moral message of Hide and Q, that our vulnerability and powerlessness, and the fight to create meaning for our lives are what make us who we are and give us meaning. That's why Riker turned down the powers at the end.

There's also the fact that if a person has absolute power, no matter how they exercise it or how noble a person they believe themselves to be, they can not do it without forcing their will on somebody and becoming a villain. Riker with Q powers would be like Gandalf with the ring.

It's not the best written episode, but the moral of the story is certainly not the problem.
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Old October 25 2013, 06:25 PM   #9
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Re: "Hide and Q" is still an amazing episode!!

JirinPanthosa wrote: View Post
There were certainly some problems with the episode but I don't disagree with its moral message, that hearkens back to Kirk's "I like my pain!"

There's one episode of Twilight Zone where a man makes a deal with the devil that he gets eternal life in exchange for his eternal soul. . .
"Escape Clause", with David Wayne.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Escape_Clause

. . .There's another Twilight Zone episode where a gambler arrives in what he believes to be heaven. He is told he can have whatever he wants, whenever he wants. . .
"A Nice Place to Visit", with Larry Blyden and Sebastian Cabot.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/A_Nice_Place_to_Visit
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Old October 25 2013, 06:27 PM   #10
Jeyl
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Re: "Hide and Q" is still an amazing episode!!

JirinPanthosa wrote: View Post
There's also the fact that if a person has absolute power, no matter how they exercise it or how noble a person they believe themselves to be, they can not do it without forcing their will on somebody and becoming a villain. Riker with Q powers would be like Gandalf with the ring.
Um... I don't really think so. Unless someone does obtain Q like powers in the real world and we see how much it affects that person, who is to really say that absolute power will automatically turn you into a villain?

The idea that "power corrupts" is not an absolute and this episode doesn't give any good examples on how it could corrupt Riker. All Riker does is try to make things better. The very fact that he acknowledges and takes everyone's wishes back shows that he is capable of dealing with his powers in a responsible manner because he's being respectful to the crew's wishes, i.e. their will. That alone to me says he's more worthy of those powers than Q is, but this episode says he shouldn't have those powers period because.... it didn't corrupt him?

Also, the Gandalf and the Ring comparison is not a fair one. The Ring is evil! It is literally designed to corrupt and taint any individual who would wield it for themselves for the sake of one day getting back to it's proper master. It has a will of it's own. Riker's power does not.

And if god like powers is such a bad thing, why does Picard gloat about how humanity is so freaking awesome that we will not only become gods ourselves, we might become more powerful than the Q? If Picard believes we're so freaking awesome, and Riker learns that he should use his power responsibly, what's wrong with continuing to have said powers so that we can show off to Q that humanity can use our powers in a sensible way?
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Old October 25 2013, 06:36 PM   #11
BillJ
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Re: "Hide and Q" is still an amazing episode!!

Jeyl wrote: View Post

Um... I don't really think so. Unless someone does obtain Q like powers in the real world and we see how much it affects that person, who is to really say that absolute power will automatically turn you into a villain?
All you have to do is look at the political and business elite today to know that power corrupts. They will simply steamroll people who disagree with their agenda, no matter how noble they may think those agendas are.
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Old October 25 2013, 06:41 PM   #12
R. Star
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Re: "Hide and Q" is still an amazing episode!!

Wesley got impaled. That was good.

"You were right not to try" when Riker doesn't save that little girl.... dang Picard hates children.
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Old October 25 2013, 06:55 PM   #13
Jeyl
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Re: "Hide and Q" is still an amazing episode!!

BillJ wrote: View Post
All you have to do is look at the political and business elite today to know that power corrupts. They will simply steamroll people who disagree with their agenda, no matter how noble they may think those agendas are.
Umm.. Politics and god like powers are a wee bit different. For one thing, politics are streamrolling over their own elected members for outright acknowledging their agendas. I don't think that's a good comparison.
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Old October 25 2013, 07:56 PM   #14
BillJ
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Re: "Hide and Q" is still an amazing episode!!

Jeyl wrote: View Post
BillJ wrote: View Post
All you have to do is look at the political and business elite today to know that power corrupts. They will simply steamroll people who disagree with their agenda, no matter how noble they may think those agendas are.
Umm.. Politics and god like powers are a wee bit different. For one thing, politics are streamrolling over their own elected members for outright acknowledging their agendas. I don't think that's a good comparison.
I do.

People will use even the slightest advantage to try to force their moral perspective on others.

If I had the power of a God, I could easily see myself forcing the world into a mold that I thought was best. I can't imagine too many people who wouldn't.

Picard's perspective in the episode is that one-day mankind as a whole will evolve to the same level of existence as the Q or perhaps higher. As they do so, they'll leave behind many of the uglier traits of the species. But they'll do it together and they'll learn how to exist in that world, together.

Giving one person God-like powers would be disastrous for the rest of the human race. No matter how well intentioned that person may be.
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Old October 25 2013, 08:35 PM   #15
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Re: "Hide and Q" is still an amazing episode!!

A good comparison is the comic book character Superman. He easily could have taken over the world if he wasn't a good guy at heart. "Worship me, or I'll turn my heat vision on you."
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