Best of What Worlds, Exactly?

Discussion in 'Star Trek: The Next Generation' started by USS Triumphant, Jan 29, 2014.

  1. USS Triumphant

    USS Triumphant Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2008
    Location:
    Go ahead, caller. I'm listening...
    Best of Both Worlds 1 & 2 are, obviously, a fan favorite pair of episodes, and certainly a couple of mine. But one thing that nags me and always has about the episode it exactly what worlds are referred to and what the heck is best about them in the NAME of the episodes. It seems to me like everything mostly kind of goes to hell, really.

    The only notion I have about it at all is that Picard is the best starship captain in the Starfleet world, turned to the best enemy as Locutus in the Borg world. But that just doesn't sit right with me.

    Any ideas? Or better, any definitive statements from showrunners on the subject that anyone here might know about?
     
  2. JirinPanthosa

    JirinPanthosa Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2012
    Maybe in the original script there were two worlds. Kind of like how in the book of Two Towers there is actually a second tower.
     
  3. dub

    dub Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2012
    Location:
    Location? What is this?
    Locutus is "the best of both worlds." The best captain in Starfleet who is now one with the hive mind. I interpreted it as a figure of speech, not taking the word "worlds" literally...except in the sense that the word itself fits nicely in Star Trek.
     
  4. Timby

    Timby LIKE LIGHTNIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIING Administrator

    Joined:
    May 28, 2001
    It's not exactly esoteric. It means that Locutus represented the best aspects of both humanity and the Borg.
     
  5. jimbotron

    jimbotron Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

    Joined:
    Nov 27, 2012
    Location:
    Bay Area, CA
    I guess it's a reference to the Borg themselves. They combine humanoid bodies and technological advancement to create a "superior" lifeform, the best of both worlds.

    One thing that really annoys me about the title now - friggin Miley Cyrus. Google the title and half the results are TNG, and the other half are Hannah Montana. :rolleyes:
     
  6. Borjis

    Borjis Commodore Commodore

    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2003
    Best of one World(Picard) Worst of the other World (Locutus)
     
  7. USS Triumphant

    USS Triumphant Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2008
    Location:
    Go ahead, caller. I'm listening...
    And then, of course, there's this horror:

    [yt]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YOZ6mXL4yBU[/yt]

    :devil:
     
  8. JD5000

    JD5000 Captain Captain

    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2013
    Location:
    Jackson, WY
    I thought this was an interesting question, as natural interpretation of "Best of Both Worlds" doesn't jive with the meaning of the episode. So I looked up the origin of the idiom, and this is what I found.

    (in the) best of both worlds/best of all worlds - ideally (usually impossibly), satisfying or achieving two needs, aims, problems that are difficult or impossible to reconcile (and usually contradictory or mutually exclusive) - this expression represents an unlikely ideal outcome or compromise.

    This makes more sense than my individual interpretation of the phrase when applied to the content of those episodes.

    EDIT: jimbotron's idea that it directly refers to the Borg as a 'combined' species is pretty valid too. :)
     
  9. jimbotron

    jimbotron Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

    Joined:
    Nov 27, 2012
    Location:
    Bay Area, CA
    The biggest insult to Trek since TATV. :rommie:
     
  10. Coloratura

    Coloratura Snuggle Princess Premium Member

    Joined:
    Dec 25, 2002
    Location:
    Ohio, USA
    I always saw it the same way Timby just explained it.
     
  11. trekker670

    trekker670 Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

    Joined:
    Aug 29, 2008
    Location:
    Michigan, United States
    Agreed. He was technologically enhance (the best of the Borg) and he retained some sense of individualism (the best of being Human)
     
  12. JD5000

    JD5000 Captain Captain

    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2013
    Location:
    Jackson, WY
    I don't think it refers to Picard specifically, although that is definitely as valid an interpretation as any. I think it's about the mutually exclusive natures of the Borg and the rest of the galaxy, but humanity specifically, in terms of the story presented.
     
  13. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2001
    That's right. It wasn't referring to any specific "worlds" as in planets; it's just a common saying referring to achieving an optimal balance between conflicting things. That's how the Borg see themselves -- as the ideal balance of biology and machine. So there's an irony to the title, in that it's using this upbeat and somewhat banal expression to refer to the philosophy driving the villains of the piece.

    It might also be a reference to Riker's personal dilemma, which paralleled that of writer Michael Piller at the time. Both Riker and Piller were debating with themselves whether to stay in their current jobs, where they were content but not advancing, or to move on to a higher-status job which would require leaving behind the people they enjoyed working with. They were wishing for a way to achieve the best of both worlds, the "world" of career ambition and the "world" of personal fulfillment. In that sense it was more a question or an aspiration -- can I find a way to have the best of both worlds?
     
  14. JD5000

    JD5000 Captain Captain

    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2013
    Location:
    Jackson, WY
    That's a great observation, Christopher. The Borg part of the storyline is so dominant that it's easy to forget about the choice Riker is forced to face. It's common for a Trek title to refer to (usually) both storylines woven into the plot of an episode, this one is more subtle than most when it comes to the Riker/Shelby part of the story. Good catch.
     
  15. dub

    dub Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2012
    Location:
    Location? What is this?
    Be honest...the real reason you started this thread was to post that video! :p
     
  16. AgentCoop

    AgentCoop Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

    I remember the first time I saw "Clerks". At one point Randal comes in and mentions to Dante that he had just been watching "The Best Of Both Worlds". "Ah!" says I. "Here comes another hilarious pop-culture deconstruction, this time about TNG."

    Turns out Randal was NOT talking about Star Trek.
     
  17. USS Triumphant

    USS Triumphant Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2008
    Location:
    Go ahead, caller. I'm listening...
    Nope. jimbotron totally provoked inspired that. The fact that I have that video in my Youtube favorites for quick reference is a complete coincidence. :alienblush: ;)

    (On a related matter - why is strikethrough disabled here?)
     
  18. Armored Saint

    Armored Saint Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2012
    Location:
    Quebec City
    I saw First Contact before TNG, so for me, The Best of both Worlds was clearly the to Flawed, weak, organic, but we evolved to include the synthetic. Now we use both to attain perfection.
     
  19. Coloratura

    Coloratura Snuggle Princess Premium Member

    Joined:
    Dec 25, 2002
    Location:
    Ohio, USA
    Yeah, I know. The lack of strikethrough significantly reduces my joke potential.
     
  20. doubleohfive

    doubleohfive Fleet Admiral

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2001
    Location:
    Hollywood, CA